JD Wetherspoon updated the market with a trading update on third quarter trading on Wednesday, sending shares downwards.

The British pub operator said that like-for-like sales rose by 7.6% and total sales grew by 8.4%, for the 13 weeks to 28 April.

Meanwhile, year-to-date like-for-like sales increased by 6.8% and total sales also climbed 7.6%.

JD Wetherspoon also said it had opened three new pubs and closed seven during the course of the year.

It intends to open an additional two pubs during the remainder of the year.

The company said that net debt at the end of the quarter totalled £746 million, with it expected to fall to £740 million by the end of the financial year.

Slimmer profit margins were ultimately attributed to wage rise costs over the course of the period.

Despite these debts, the statement affirmed that the company ‘remains in a sound financial position’.

The chairman of JD Wetherspoon, Tim Martin, said:

“We continue to anticipate a trading outcome for this financial year in line with our previous expectations.”

Martin founded the pub chain back in 1979. It now operates around 900 pubs around the UK including the Lloyds No.1 brand.

He has been a vocal supporter of Brexit, and has pledged to serve more British and Australian sparkling wines, as opposed to popular European alcoholic beverages.

Shares in JD Wetherspoon (LON:JDW) are currently down -4.46% as of 11:17PM (GMT).