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Next profit leaps 12pc

Next, the UK's second-biggest clothing retailer, reported a 12pc increase in full-year earnings, making more money than Marks & Spencer for the first time in the brand's 32-year history.

Underlying pre-tax profit rose to £695.2m (€833m) in the 12 months through January, the retailer said yesterday, adding that it had been a "great year".