Morrisons posted an improvement in sales for its first quarter on Thursday, saying that for the 13 weeks to 6 May, group like-for-like sales excluding fuel were up 3.6%, comprising contributions from retail of 1.8% and wholesale of 1.8%.
Sainsbury's continues to lose ground to its supermarket rivals, fresh data showed on Tuesday, painting a stark picture of why the merger with Asda has been proposed.
Kevin Havelock, a non-executive director of supermarket giant Morrison's, purchased 100,000 ordinary shares in the Bradford-based firm on Tuesday.
There was mixed news for retailers, pubs and restaurants on Tuesday as encouraging high street research was published by the British Retail Consortium but spending data from Barclaycard painted a more gloomy picture.
Tesco plc: Berenberg upgrades to buy with a target price of 255p.
Berenberg upped its stance on Tesco and Morrisons on Friday as it took a look at the UK food retail sector.
Tesco and Morrisons outperformed their major supermarket rivals in March, while a stumbling Sainsbury's is close to losing its second place to a resurgent Asda.
Analysts at Bernstein upgraded their view on Morrisons on Thursday, touting its best-in-class long-term total shareholders' return and arguing that it made for a "great" income stock despite it being unloved by the so-called 'sell-side'.
Supermarket group Morrisons announced a special dividend on top of its annual payout as management expressed confidence that the company will continue to grow sales and profits.
Grocery price inflation eased off in recent weeks, according to two surveys of the sector released on Tuesday, which both found Sainsbury's was the slowest growing of the big four supermarkets.
Analysts at Jefferies upgraded their recommendation for shares of Tesco and Morrisons on Monday from 'hold' to 'buy', explaining that the pound has rallied against the dollar by well above 10% over the past year, while discount supermarkets' new store applications have fallen 25% in the past 2 years.
Tesco: Jefferies upgrades to buy with a target price of 250p.
Supermarket sales increased in value by 3.4% in recent weeks thanks to grocery inflation and a trend for veganism, with the 'big four' groups continuing to lose market share to discounters Lidl and Aldi.
Morrisons told staff on Thursday that it would soon be cutting roughly 1,500 store management roles as it joins other supermarkets in overhauling its workforce to adapt to changing consumer habits.
Sainsbury's and its large supermarket rivals are likely to deliver "zero growth" in 2018, warned Credit Suisse as it downgraded the orange-liveried grocer to a 'neutral' rating.
Supermarket group Morrisons reported on a much stronger than expected Christmas period, boosted by the roll-out of its new wholesale operations.
As food inflation hit its highest level in four years, Tesco and Sainsbury's enjoyed the strongest sales growth of the big four supermarkets in recent weeks, though the quartet continued to lose market share to discounters.
Tesco: Goldman Sachs upgrades to Buy from Sell.
Tesco and Morrisons were boosted by upgrades from Goldman Sachs, which upped its forecasts for both supermarkets as wages track below food price inflation for the first time in four years.
Britain's high court has accepted a compensation claim made by more than five thousand current and former Morrisons staff whose personal details leaked on to the internet, a case that could have far reaching implications for every person and business in the UK.