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Tesco predicts internet profits next year

LONDON - Tesco has retained its position as the nation's favourite supermarket and says its business will go into profit by the end of this year.

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Its first-half results were in line with predictions, as pre-tax profits rose 14% to £481m and sales were up 14.2% to £11.5bn.

Tesco also recorded a 77% increase in internet sales to £146m. The business, however, continues to make a loss, with its £3m deficit attributed to expenditure on the launch of new sites, such as the wine warehouse.

Terry Leahy, chief executive of Tesco, said the chain's Clubcard customer loyalty scheme had been enhanced and that "around 80% of our customers use Clubcard and in the first half we gave away nearly £100m of coupons".

Tesco's share price was down slightly in morning trading, opening at 251.5p and falling by 2.5% to 245.3p.

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