Associated British Foods (AB Foods) raised its full-year profit outlook on Tuesday for the second time in four months, driven by strong trading from both its Primark (which trades as Penneys in Ireland) clothing business and its food operations in its latest quarter.
AB Foods said it now expected adjusted operating profit, its key profit measure, for the year to 16 September to be 'slightly better' than its previous expectation of 'moderately ahead' of 2021/22's £1.435 billion.
Britain's consumers have shown resilience in 2023 despite high inflation and rising borrowing costs.
However, industry data has shown spending lost pace in August.
Primark's growth has been driven by selective price increases, well received ranges and strongly performing new stores.
Looking ahead to its 2023/24 year, the group forecast Primark's operating profit margin would "recover strongly" from the around 8% expected in 2022/23.
It also forecast a 'substantial improvement' in profitability at its sugar business.