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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 August, 2005, 07:49 GMT 08:49 UK
M&S cuts prices on clothing range
M&S store
M&S is looking to increase the number of visitors to stores
Marks & Spencer has cut prices on its cheapest women's clothing range by up to 25%, in a move designed to put pressure on rivals such as Next.

"We have been making double-digit reductions of opening price points where we feel we need to in order to be competitive," an M&S spokeswoman said.

She said other summer price reductions include a 9 cotton t-shirt down to 6.

Brokers Seymour Pierce said M&S would have to sell more to compensate for the lower prices.

'Compete better'

Other High Street outlets have benefited recently from what are perceived as comparatively high prices at M&S.

In a report Seymour Pierce says "looking around the store, we see that M&S has reduced the price points of much of its 'entry' merchandise by around 25%".

It's all about increasing footfall in the stores with a view to raising the average transaction value
Rhys Williams, Seymour Pierce

Analyst at Seymour Pierce, Rhys Williams, said the new prices were designed to help M&S "compete better with Next, which has lowered its 'entry' prices several times over the past 18 months".

He said M&S would be hoping customers lured by lower prices would be attracted by more expensive merchandise when they got into the stores.

"It's all about increasing footfall in the stores with a view to raising the average transaction value," he added.

Other price reductions at M&S this summer include a pack of men's socks down from 10 to 7.


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