Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing’s H1 profit rose 18% despite China slowdown

REUTERS/Tingshu Wang/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: People wearing face masks walk past a store of Fast Retailing’s fashion chain Uniqlo in Beijing, China May 22, 2020.

TOKYO (Reuters) – Clothing brand Uniqlo’s Japanese owner said on Thursday first-half operating profit climbed 18%, even as COVID-19 lockdowns in China hampered sales in its biggest overseas market.

Fast Retailing Co said operating profit was 189 billion yen ($1.51 billion) in the six months through February, against 168 billion yen a year earlier.

The company maintained its full-year profit forecast at 270 billion yen. That compares with a consensus forecast for annual profit to total 278 billion yen, according to a Refinitiv poll of 11 analysts. ($1 = 125.4300 yen)