Tesco has refused to be drawn on speculation that they will launch a major price initiative in the UK next week.

Analysts and media outlets have reported that the retail giant is on the cusp of introducing swathing price cuts.

An analyst note from investment banking group Panmure Gordon said today (21 September): “It looks like the sector’s big dirty secret is about to reveal itself. Market gossip suggests that Tesco is set to launch a significant price offensive next week.”

However, Panmure said it believes Tesco will avoid an all-out price war with a measured response, adding: “We believe that Tesco will be proportionate and it will retain its return on capital targets, which would be a significant signal that it expects to derive medium term benefits for shareholders and that the other levers for higher returns, such as the US, are moving in the right direction.”

A spokesperson for Tesco refused to confirm or deny whether a pricing strategy was imminent. “We don’t comment on speculation,” she said.