02/10/2013 10:10 BST | Updated 02/10/2013 10:13 BST

Tesco Profits Fall 24.5% While Sainsbury's Enjoys 2% Sales Rise

Photos of the logos for Tesco and Sainsbury's.

Tesco has revealed a stark 24.5% drop in its profits over the first half of the year to £1.39 billion after suffering from poor overseas trading.

Meanwhile, supermarket rival Sainsbury's has continued to close the gap on Tesco as it posted a 2% increase in sales in the second quarter.

Despite Tesco's dramatic fall in year-on-year profits, the supermarket giant enjoyed improved UK trading as profits rose 1.5% to £1.13 bilion. This comes after the supermarket giant, which was recently caught up in controversy for stocking a "g*y best friend" doll, saw its like-for-like sales excluding petrol remain flat in the second quarter.

Tesco chief executive Philip Clarke said: "Despite continuing challenges, we have made further progress on our strategic priorities.

"Our performance in the UK has strengthened through the half, particularly in our food business, as we have continued our work to Build a Better Tesco," he added.

Meanwhile, supermarket rival Sainsbury's saw like-for-like sales rise throughout the first half to September 28 by 1.4% excluding fuel after its 35th consecutive quarter of sales growth.

Sainsbury's has been the only supermarket of the Big Four to grow its market share. According to the latest Kantar Worldpanel figures, Sainsbury's market share expanded to 16.6% in the 12 weeks to mid-September from 16.4% a year earlier.

Tesco's share of UK grocery spending tumbled from 30.9% to 30.2% in the same period.

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