H&M CEO Carl Johan Persson presents the new report, Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/Scanpix

H&M posts disappointing fourth quarter

The Swedish fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz has posted a surprise fall in quarterly profit. Squeezed between higher costs for raw materials like cotton and price cuts to stay competitive, H&M says its net profit during the fourth quarter dropped by 11 percent to US$ 846 million.

Despite the disappointing finish, net profit for all of 2010 rose by 14 percent, however. The third biggest fashion group in the world, after Zara in Spain and the American Gap, H&M says it plans to open 250 new stores this year.

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