UK: Asda enjoying fastest Big Four growth - TNS
The UK's second-largest food retailer saw its sales rise 8.8% during the 12 weeks to 22 February, TNS said.
With the recession continuing to weigh on consumer spending, Morrisons enjoyed an 8.2% rise in sales, taking its share of the market to 11.8%.
Ed Garner, director of research at TNS, said shoppers were switching outlets or trading down in-store to search for the lowest prices.
"In the light of this shopper behaviour, Asda's consistent low-price positioning is paying off," Garner said.
Sales at Sainsbury's, meanwhile, rose by 5.7% but below the 6.4% growth seen by the market as a whole. Garner said the retailer's moves to lower prices had led to its sales growth falling behind the market.
"This is explained by self-imposed price deflation as their pricing becomes more aggressive with Switch & Save and the growth of the Basics range," Garner said.
Tesco's sales rose 5%, taking its market share to 30.3%.
"Freezer centres are enjoying the double benefit of a low-price reputation together with a renaissance in the frozen food category," Garner said.
According to the TNS data, grocery prices rose by 8.7% during the period as the weak sterling continues to drive up commodity prices.
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