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Tesco like-for-like sales rise for 10th quarter; H&M Q2 sales miss expectations

TOP NEWS

* Tesco PLC, the U.K.'s largest grocery retailer by revenue, said fiscal first-quarter like-for-like sales jumped 1.8% year over year, its 10th consecutive quarter of like-for-like sales growth and its best quarterly performance since 2011. The improvement during the 13 weeks ended May 26 stemmed from Tesco's performance in the U.K. and Ireland, where like-for-like sales during that period climbed 3.5% year over year. Meanwhile, Central Europe like-for-like sales shrank 1%, which Tesco said was a result of regulatory changes in Poland and Slovakia masking strong underlying performance, while Asia like-for-like sales dropped 9% as the company stepped back from bulk selling in Thailand. In lunchtime trading in London on June 15, Tesco's shares were up 5.1 pence, or 2.04%, at 255.9 pence.

* H&M Hennes & Mauritz AB reported fiscal second-quarter sales that fell short of expectations as the fashion retailer continues to struggle with adapting to reduced footfall at its stores and the shift to online shopping. The Swedish company said sales in the three months ended May 31 edged up 1.2% year over year to 51.98 billion kronor from 51.38 billion kronor in the year-ago period, below the S&P Capital IQ consensus estimate of 52.63 billion kronor. In lunchtime trading in Stockholm on June 15, H&M's shares were down 5.84 kronor, or 4.17%, at 134.24 kronor.

TEXTILES, APPAREL AND LUXURY GOODS

* Spanish conglomerate Puig Beauty & Fashion Group S.L. acquired a majority stake in Belgian luxury brand Van Noten Andries NV for an undisclosed amount. Under the deal, designer Dries Van Noten will remain as his namesake company's chief creative officer and board chairman as well as continue to own a minority stake in the business.

* Kering SA appointed British designer Daniel Lee as the new creative director of its Bottega Veneta brand, effective July 1, replacing Tomas Maier, who left the luxury fashion house after working with Italian label since 2001. Prior to his appointment, Lee was the director of ready-to-wear design at LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE's French unit Céline.

E-COMMERCE

* Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. shopping platform Tmall rolled out an app for electronic books in an effort to target China's growing digital reading market, according to a post on the company's Alizila news site. The new Tmall Reader app was developed with Alibaba Literature, another online business unit under the Chinese e-commerce giant.

* Amazon.com Inc. is partnering with Brazilian cosmetics firms Grupo Boticario and Natura Cosméticos SA to sell beauty products on the logistics platform the e-commerce giant is developing in Brazil, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the development. One of the sources close to Natura said the company had a meeting with Amazon last week but was still considering the proposals, while another source told Reuters that Boticario might sell nonproprietary products on Amazon in Brazil.

* Etsy Inc. raised fees for sellers conducting business with the company as it announced an upward revision to its fiscal 2018 guidance. Beginning July 16, the company that operates e-commerce platform Etsy.com will increase the transaction fee it charges sellers for every sale to 5% from 3.5% and apply a 5% fee on shipping costs. Accounting for the company's revised commission structure, Etsy now expects revenue for fiscal 2018 to grow in a range between 32% and 34% from its previous guidance of a revenue increase between 22% to 24%.

* Rakuten Inc.'s vacation rental arm Rakuten Lifull Stay Inc. launched its rental and accommodations booking site Vacation Stay, which had started accepting registrations of domestic properties in March. The rollout comes after the passing of the Private Lodgings Business Act in Japan.

HYPERMARKETS AND SUPERCENTERS

* Carrefour SA's Belgian unit said it sent a proposal to its "social partners" but has not yet signed a definitive agreement, amid reports that the company has struck a deal with trade unions to limit job cuts and store closures. Retail Detail, citing a report by Belgian newspaper La Libre, reported that Carrefour Belgium has agreed to scale back its planned job cuts to about 1,000 workers and refrain from closing two stores that reportedly had been on the chopping block.

* Walmart Inc.'s membership-only warehouse chain, Sam's Club, plans to open a 32,000-square-foot store in Dallas, Texas, in the fall of 2018 that primarily sells fresh food items and grab-and-go meals. The site will also test new technologies, including a fast membership sign-up, self-serve returns and the Scan & Go checkout app.

HOUSEHOLD DURABLES AND SPECIALTY RETAIL

* Privately owned firm SIGNA Holding GmbH, founded by real estate entrepreneur René Benko, agreed to purchase the Kika/Leiner business unit of struggling retailer Steinhoff International Holdings NV, saving the subsidiary from bankruptcy. According to a report by Austrian daily Oesterreich, Signa is expected to pay about €500 million for the Steinhoff unit, €100 million of which will be injected in Kika/Leiner to continue operations of the home furniture retailer.

HOTELS, RESORTS AND CRUISE LINES

* Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. agreed to buy a majority stake in privately owned Silversea Cruises Ltd. for about $1 billion, adding luxury and expedition cruises to its portfolio. The Miami-based operator will acquire 66.7% of the target company based on an enterprise value of about $2 billion and will finance the purchase through debt.

INDUSTRY NEWS

* U.S. retail and food services sales rose 0.8% to $502 billion in May, higher than a 0.4% hike expected, supporting expectations for an acceleration in economic growth in the second quarter, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Retail sales registered an upwardly revised 0.4% gain in April. Excluding motor vehicle and parts, sales increased to $399.33 billion for the month from $395.76 billion in April. Year over year, total sales climbed 5.9% from $474.16 billion in May 2017.

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The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng was down 0.43% to 30,309.49, and the Nikkei 225 was up 0.50% to 22,851.75.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 slipped 0.75% to 7,707.44, and the Euronext 100 rose 0.15% to 1,076.62.

On the macro front

The Empire State Manufacturing Survey, the industrial production report, the consumer sentiment report, the Baker-Hughes Rig Count and the Treasury International Capital report are due out today.

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