Jan.17 - Price cuts and revamped product ranges have helped Carrefour deliver an improved fourth-quarter performance in its core French market, reassuring investors about new boss Georges Plassat's ability to revive Europe's largest retailer. Sonia Legg reports
6 percent is today's daily digit in Europe - the amount Carrrefour shares rose after the release of their fourth quarter results. The world's second biggest retailer has been battling to reverse years of underperformance in Europe. But it seems new product ranges and price cuts are bearing fruit. The French group made sales of just under 23 billion euros in the last quarter of 2012 in line with forecasts. The picture in France is still a negative one with revenue down 0.8 percent - but that's better than the previous 1.5 percent drop. Like-for-like hypermarket sales also fell less than in the last two quarters. Outside France the picture is better with robust growth in Brazil - it's second biggest market - and improved sales in China. The results will be boost to Carrefour's new CEO Georges Plassat. He's been fighting competititon from online, specialist stores and increased local shopping.