Bonmarché has warned that it will make a worse than expected loss this year after tough trading in March.

Bonmarché had previously anticipated an underlying loss of up to £4m, but the figure is now expected to be between £5m and £6m.

The warning is Bonmarché’s third in six months.

The fashion retailer said sales since Christmas had been “slightly above the level required” to hit its earlier forecast range but “trading since the beginning of March has been significantly weaker, reversing sales gains made in the previous months”.

Bonmarché described the downturn in trading as “a consequence of the demand for transitional ranges, between winter and spring, having been satisfied during January and February”.

It said: “Although sales of spring season stock benefited from the spell of warm weather in late February, this is not yet a large enough part of the sales mix to compensate for the lower demand for transitional stock.”

Bonmarché reassured that it had no cash problems. The retailer said: “The group’s cash balance reaches its lowest point in the annual cycle at the end of March, when its bank facility is expected to be sufficient to meet liquidity requirements, even at the lowest end of the [profits] range.

“Other than this short-term borrowing requirement at the year end, the group expects to continue to operate with a positive net cash balance during full-year ’20.”