In a preliminary statement, JD Sports Fashion reported a strong 12 percent increase in same-store sales for the five weeks ended Jan. 3, in spite of strong comparatives in the previous year, as well as for the first 48 weeks of its current financial year, ended on the same day. The momentum of the JD banner and the sports business in general was maintained during the critical Christmas selling period. The management indicates that its headline profit before taxes and exceptional items for the full financial year ending on Jan. 31 will this exceed the top end of analysts' expectations, which ranged up to £90 million (€118m-$136m) before the announcement, in spite of incremental costs related to the international expansion of the group.