Poundland shares fell 43.1% to £5.3m

Poundland’s half-year pre-tax profits fell 43.1% to £5.3m, and like-for-like sales were down 2.8%.

The retailer’s shares have plunged nearly 20% after the retailer reported a fall in sales and profits. But its acquisition of 99p Stores had added "early sales uplifts", said chief executive Jim McCarthy.

However, McCarthy continued “the chain had seen highly volatile trading conditions so far in the third quarter".

"We flagged that the results for this half this year would be less than last year because last year was an exceptional period where we benefited from... a late Easter that had quite an impact on sales, we had unusually fewer competitor openings, we had soft comparables and we had the one-off loom band craze," he told the BBC.