M&S shares up 28% in month after return to profit

Marks & Spencer’s share price has soared after reporting a half-year profit of almost £160 million.

The 30 per cent increase from last year, when the retailer made its first loss in 94 years, sparked a similar surge in investor interest.

Shares are up 28.6 per cent from mid-October at around 237p, with a leap of 31p between markets closing on Wednesday and opening on Thursday.

Compared to this time last year, they are trading 87 per cent higher.

READ MORE: Ex-M&S boss Stuart Rose hits back at ‘stupid’ PM

Speaking last week, chief executive Steve Rowe said he would not “overclaim” the results and pointed to “Covid bounce back tailwinds”.

However, he added: “Underlying performance is improving, with our main businesses making important gains in market share.

“The hard yards of driving long term change are beginning to be borne out in our performance.”

Marks & Spencer was hit hard by the pandemic, which sent it spiralling to a £71.6 million loss.

It was late to the grocery shift to e-commerce, launching a £750 million venture with Ocado six months after the lockdown began.

Ocado accounted for 27 per cent of all sales in the 26 weeks to October.

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