US retail giant Wal-Mart said group third quarter sales grew 11.5%, albeit in “a challenging environment” and that international growth of 14.4% was led by its UK subsidiary Asda.

The world’s biggest retailer said sales at Asda excluding petrol, grew in low double-digit percentage terms over the quarter. While like-for-like food sales saw high single-digit percentage growth.

Sales of the George clothing range rose 30% and its Fast Fashion ranges - made from start to finish in five weeks - were “proving popular”.

Sales of Asda’s non-food items excluding clothes rose in the mid-thirties in percentage terms, with homewares, toys and entertainment products also selling well, said Wal-Mart.

Wal-Mart boss Lee Scott said: “Going into the important holiday selling season, we feel confident we are well positioned for a successful fourth quarter."

Group turnover for the period rose to $58.8bn up from $52.7bn last year.