German retailing giant Metro Group, which owns Makro Cash & Carry in the UK, has reported a 2.5% drop in first-quarter group sales to €15.2bn.

The company blamed the fall on exchange rate fluctuations, claiming that if the results were adjusted for calendar and currency effects, sales would have increased by 3.6%.

International sales dropped 4.5% to €8.9bn during the period, while sales in Germany grew by 0.6% to € 6.2bn.

Sales at Metro Cash & Carry, which includes the Makro Cash & Carry business, fell 6.4% to €6.9bn. There was no mention on the performance of Makro UK.

“We have seen a fair first-quarter without surprises,” said Metro chief executive Eckhard Cordes. “Against the backdrop of the continued and further intensifying economic crisis the only surprise is that there is no surprise.”