Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan is not worried about an economic slowdown, saying the U.S. consumer is still in a strong place.Banksread more
Target CEO Brian Cornell says he's encouraged by Trump's decision to postpone some consumer-oriented tariffs that were supposed to start Sept. 1.Retailread more
Corporate debt recently passed the $1 trillion mark in a continuing sign of global financial displacement.Marketsread more
President Trump insists the economy is healthy and says the only thing holding U.S. growth back is the Federal Reserve.Marketsread more
Target shares opened at record high after the retailer beat second-quarter earnings expectations and boosted its full-year estimates.Retailread more
Gluskin Sheff's David Rosenberg predicts one of the strongest parts of the U.S. economy will disappoint Wall Street and lead to a market meltdown.Futures Nowread more
Sanders' sweeping proposal would make it easier for workers to join unions and end the so-called right-to-work laws recently favored by the GOP.2020 Electionsread more
Germany has sold a 30-year bond with a 0% interest rate for the first time on Wednesday.Marketsread more
Morgan Stanley warns that "the wheels for a slowdown are in motion," adding that a slowdown in the manufacturing sector is spreading.Marketsread more
Lowe's also tops rival Home Depot on same-store sales growth in the U.S.Retailread more
The merger of the two rival chains was blocked by Britain's Competition and Markets Authority in April, and Sainsbury's Chief Financial Officer Kevin O'Byrne told CNBC Wednesday that the group was "disappointed" with the outcome.
"The conclusion from the CMA that a combined Sainsbury's and Asda would increase prices, reduce service, extend queues etc. in one of the most competitive grocery markets in the world, and customers wouldn't go down the road to Tesco, Aldi, Lidl, Morrisons, Co-op, etc., is not a market we recognize," he said.
Sainsbury's fourth quarter to March 9 like-for-like sales fell 0.9%, having fallen 1.1% over the Christmas period. They declined by 0.2% over the full 2018-19 year.
However, underlying pre-tax profit for the year did exceeded expectations to rise by 7.8% to £635 million ($829 million), aided by synergies from the Argos general merchandise business it purchased in 2016. Shares rose by around 6% in early deals Wednesday.
The grocer also said it would increase and accelerate investment in its core business to improve over 400 supermarkets this year. It made a new commitment to reduce net debt by at least £600 million over the next three years.
O'Byrne also denied reports that the position of Sainsbury's CEO Mike Coupe was under pressure following the blocking of the merger.
"This was a deal that was unanimously agreed by the board," he said.
"We did a lot of research, we took a lot of advice on that as did Walmart. While this was never a dead cert, it was a high probability that this deal could be done. The management team are just getting on with running the business in what is a challenging market."
O'Byrne told CNBC that the group was "making lots of progress in areas where customers are moving their shopping habits," including its online and convenience areas of the business.
Responding to talks of a distribution agreement between Britain's fourth-largest supermarket chain, Morrisons, and Amazon Prime, O'Byrne said Sainsbury's could list its products with Amazon Prime "tomorrow" if it so wished.
"We have a very strong online business ourselves, so we don't think that's necessary," he added.
—Reuters contributed to this article.