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Fast Retailing lowers profit outlook

Japanese company Fast Retailing has lowered its profit forecast for the year to August from 92 billion yen ($903.9 million) to 88 billion yen ($862 million).

That’s after its net profit declined 1.4 per cent in the first half, due to falling foreign exchange rates.

The sales tax increase and Japan’s ageing population, have dampened demand there, the company says. Same store sales just grew 2.2 per cent for the six months to February compared to the 3.6 per cent a year earlier.

Fast Retailing plans to rely on overseas markets for growth. In China alone, it will increase its Uniqlo store network from 267 to 1000 by 2020.

The flagship brand Uniqlo is also slated to enter new international markets including Germany on April 11 and Australia on April 16.

Besides Uniqlo, Fast Retailing also owns brands including GU, J Brand, Comptoir des Cotonniers, Princesse tam.tam and Theory.

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