LONDON, United Kingdom — Moss Bros Group Plc warned on Friday its full-year operating profit before items would be "materially lower" than market expectations, sending shares of the British suit retailer down 29 percent to their lowest in almost 7 years.
The company's like-for-like retail sales, including e-commerce, slid 6.9 percent in the first half ended July, the latest UK retailer to blame a heat wave this year and the football World Cup for poor performance.
"Menswear was specifically impacted negatively by the combination and longevity of these two external factors," Moss Brothers Chief Executive Brian Brick said. "High street footfall dropped dramatically."
The company now expects to report a full-year operating profit before items of less than 2.3 million pounds.
Brokerage Peel Hunt responded by cutting its forecast for this year's profit before tax by 1.8 million pounds to 0.5 million pounds, with similar downgrades to future years.
British weather forecasters say 2018 has been the joint-hottest summer since records began in 1910, though temperatures in August were closer to average than those in June and July.
Supermarkets, pubs and restaurants have benefited from the hot weather and England's long run in the World Cup, but clothing sales have suffered as consumers spent less time shopping and delayed buying autumn ranges.
By Abinaya Vijayaraghavan; editor:Patrick Graham.