Marks & Spencer's food division had a "standout" performance over Christmas, helping lift what was otherwise a disappointing trading period for the business.

UK food revenue grew 1.5% to £1.7 billion in the three months to the end of December, the company said.

However, M&S clothes stores fared much worse, with sales in the clothing and home division dropping 2.7% to £1.1 billion in the third quarter.

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On a like-for-like basis, which strips out the effect of new stores and closures, UK revenue grew 0.2%.

Shares were down more than 10% by 10am.

Chief executive Steve Rowe said: "The food business continued to outperform the market, and clothing and home had a strong start to the quarter, albeit this was followed by a challenging trading environment in the lead-up to Christmas."

He added that "disappointing one-off issues" such as waste in the food business and the performance of its gifts range "held us back from delivering a stronger result".

On a call with reporters, Mr Rowe said that, although customers purchased a lot of M&S food, "we bought more than we sold", but he promised that no food waste went to landfill.

The business stuck to its guidance, but warned that gross margins are likely to be at the lower end of expectations.

Online clothes sales failed to bring much Christmas cheer for M&S management. Online clothing and home revenue in the UK was up 1.5% - lower than expected.

The business said it had to deal with competitors offering discounts to customers, and less furniture being dispatched.

Tesco has said it eked out a 0.1% rise in UK sales over the key Christmas trading weeks despite "challenging" trading conditions.

The UK's biggest grocery chain said it outperformed a "subdued" market, delivering its fifth Christmas in a row of sales growth.

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While UK same-store sales grew in the six weeks to January 4, it saw a 0.2% drop in the 19 weeks covering both the third quarter and festive period.

Outgoing chief executive Dave Lewis, who recently announced plans to step down in the summer, said: "In a subdued UK market we performed well, delivering our fifth consecutive Christmas of growth.

"In our centenary year, our customer proposition was compelling, our product offering very competitive, and, thanks to the outstanding contribution of our colleagues, our operational performance was the best of the last six years.

"As a result, this Christmas we had the biggest-ever day of UK food sales in our history."

International Airlines Group's long-serving chief executive Willie Walsh has revealed plans to retire from the British Airways owner after a 15-year career with the group.

Mr Walsh - who orchestrated the creation of International Airlines Group (IAG) through the merger of British Airways and Spanish carrier Iberia - will step down from the role and board of IAG on March 26 and retire on June 30.

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He will be succeeded by Iberia chief executive Luis Gallego.

Mr Walsh said: "It has been a privilege to have been instrumental in the creation and development of IAG.

"I have had the pleasure of working with many exceptional people over the past 15 years at British Airways and at IAG."

He added: "Luis has been a core member of the team and has shown true leadership over the years and I have no doubt he will be a great CEO of IAG."

Mr Walsh became chief executive of British Airways in 2005 and then led its merger with Iberia in 2011.

IAG chairman Antonio Vazquez said: "Under Willie's leadership IAG has become one of the leading global airline groups.

"Willie has been the main driver of this unique idea that is IAG."

He praised Mr Walsh's "strong leadership and clear vision".