Morrisons has reported that it is confident its full-year results will be ahead of earlier expectations as it has achieved strong trading in its first and second quarters.

The grocer, which reported in its first quarter management statement that sales growth is well ahead of the market despite strong comparative figures, said this growth had been maintained through the second quarter.

Morrisons said an increasing number of customers are shopping at its stores, attracted by its fresh offering, keen positioning on price and promotions and availability. It said this proposition provides a solid base for the remainder of the year.

The grocer said the resultant volume growth is helping to deliver operating leverage through supply chain benefits, and together with its better than projected improvements from its optimisation plan margin initiatives, its ex-fuel gross margin for the full year is now expected to exceed our original plan by approximately 40 bps.

Morrisons said the remaining optimisation plan initiatives are progressing well and are expected to exceed expectations by £20m.