News Another storming performance from the value fashion chain Primark

Primark saw a 14 per cent increase in sales in the 16 weeks to 4 January

Primark poaches Matalan director

The discount fashion retailer Primark has poached a director from rival Matalan to the strategically important role of chief operating officer.

Market Report: Primark's owner suffers from its premium rating

Profit-taking sullied the mood around Associated British Foods last night, with traders booking gains after analysts directed their attention to the chinks in the Primark-owner's armour.

Editor-At-Large: The disaffection that created Moat is what matters

Crime has dropped to the lowest level for more than 30 years – so why do many of us feel unsafe? Although we think crime has fallen in our neighbourhood, two-thirds of us believe it has risen across the country as a whole. Could it be that anti-social behaviour, which rarely results in arrests or convictions, contributes to our feelings of unease? And is this worse than 10 years ago? Low-grade, threatening behaviour which may not get reported often blights the lives of people living in council flats and estates and there are numerous examples of mindless intimidation, where residents say they feel besieged, and claim the police don't do enough.

Primark and JJB Sports defy jitters on high street

Two of the high street's biggest chains reported sharp jumps in sales yesterday, providing further evidence of resilient consumer spending.

Readers' review: Sex and the City 2 (15)

"After being coerced into seeing Sex and the City 2 by three female friends, I reluctantly went. At least I was going to the Coronet in Notting Hill Gate, one of my favourite London cinemas. Being gay seemed to cause the most laughs, which made me question what year I was living in. Samantha and her menopausal symptoms seemed to me to be as funny as it got. What was I doing watching four ageing women parading in a never-ending supply of overly expensive clothes? I upped and left. I couldn't take it any more. It was the singing that did it. Enough was enough."

Westfield signs up large retailers for Stratford site

The Australian property company Westfield has found tenants to fill nearly two-thirds of the retail space at its £1.5bn new shopping centre at Stratford ahead of the 2012 London Olympics.

Double denim: the ultimate sin?

Double denim used to be the stuff of nightmares...

High street retailers show their resilience

Britain's retailers continue to defy predictions of a consumer spending slowdown, with companies at very different ends of the high street publishing positive trading updates yesterday.

The Week Ahead: Primark is key growth engine at AB Foods

Hopes are running ahead of half-yearly results from Associated British Foods, with analysts expecting confirmation of continued growth at the company's Primark retail chain. In a pre-close update issued earlier this year, AB Foods said Primark sales over the six months to the end of February were "substantially ahead" of the year before, as store openings fed through and like-for-like figures strengthened across the business. "Like-for-like sales growth was 8 per cent in the half [year], and as our estimate was 7 per cent like- for-like growth for the first 16 weeks, this suggests growth accelerated towards the period end," Panmure Gordon said in a preview published last week. Including new space, the broker said it was looking for total sales growth of 18 per cent at Primark. Investec too expects to hear of "robust trading" at the chain. The sugar and groceries businesses should also support AB Foods, the broker said.

Primark profit surge expected

Associated British Foods (ABF), the owner of value high street fashion chain Primark, is expected to announce a surge in its annual pre-tax profit to nearly £700m on Tuesday.

Primark withdraws padded bikini tops for children

Padded bikini tops for young girls were taken off the shelves by Primark today after the high street chain was accused of sexualising children.

Shoppers 'plagued by guilt' after splashing out

As dirty habits go, it is perhaps not the most unsavoury.

Virginia Ironside's Dilemmas: My husband gets angry about the amount I spend

Dear Virginia,

As a full-time mother of two young boys, I'm financially dependent on my husband.

The battle for your fashion pound

Perceived wisdom has it that every six months, fashion designers decree what we will wear. But with everything from the cult of celebrity to the dire economic situation influencing us, are women falling out of love with traditional trends? Given the lack of winter coats for sale in February, and the fact that women rarely see their body shape or budget reflected on the catwalks or in magazines, it would be hard to blame them. And now the ethical dimension has created even more difficulties for the customer who wants to stay on trend.

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