M&S shares hit as traders fret over Xmas trading

London Stock ExchangeTue: Shares in Marks & Spencer continued their poor recent run on concerns about Christmas trading, with one broker forecasting a 5.5% slump in non-food underlying sales over the festive quarter.

The stock was down 1% or 4.7p at 442.9p and has now fallen 13.8 % over the last month.

Shares finished higher after China hinted at further stimulus and a report showed an unexpected increase in UK consumer confidence this month.

GfK’s UK consumer confidence index increased one point to +2 in December during the festive season, a touch higher than consensus forecasts for a reading of +1.

Official data on the economy shows the Chancellor is extremely unlikely to meet his borrowing forecasts this year. Headline public borrowing rose to £14.2 billion, 10% higher than in the same month last year.

ITV retreated after rising on Monday amid speculation that it could be a takeover target.

The FTSE 100 closed up 48.26 points (0.8%) at 6,083.1

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