The Week: City News - Debenhams sales increase

Debenhams has reported a nominal 0.1 per cent year-on-year rise in like-for-like sales for the 18 weeks to 2 January, but expressed concern about the upcoming effects of a rise in VAT and a General Election.

Total sales grew 1.6 per cent over the same period. While the retailer said its gross margin "improved significantly", rivals such as House of Fraser and John Lewis both reported more significant sales growths over the festive season.