Shares in Next were down on the FTSE 100 in afternoon trading ahead of the retailer's first quarter update, expected tomorrow.

In March the group said that it was still cautious in its outlook as consumers weather the spending changes being implemented by the coalition government.

The group predicted that sales growth in the first half could be anywhere between -0.5 per cent and +2.5 per cent, with profit expected to be in the region of £520 million to £570 million.

Keith Bowman, analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said, "Against a backdrop of rising cotton prices, management is expected to provide an updated estimate for product price rises during the second half of the current financial year (currently 8% to 10%). Ahead of the update, market consensus opinion currently denotes a strong hold."

By 16:15 shares in Next were down 0.89 per cent on the FTSE 100 to 2,217.00 pence per share.