“Sainsbury’s sales are stuck in reverse”, writes The Times (£) noting that a further fall in sales at Sainsbury’s has thrown a still sharper focus on the supermarket’s planned £12 billion merger with Asda. The sales slide at Sainsbury’s has accelerated, piling pressure on chief executive Mike Coupe in the wake of the competition watchdog appearing to scupper its merger with Asda in doubt (The Telegraph). Sainsbury’s has been named the worst performing supermarket in Britain just days after it suffered an embarrassing blow to its planned £14billion merger with Asda (The Daily Mail)

Brexit is driving a shift in shopping behaviour, research has found, with consumers holding back on non-essential spending and stockpiling food as the possibility of no-deal Brexit looms. (The Daily Mail)

The Government will slash Britain’s trade tariffs to more than at any point in history if the UK leaves the European Union without a deal, according to Sky News. The decision to axe 80-90% of all tariffs imposed on goods imported into Britain would “represent a bombshell for many manufacturers and farmers in the UK”. However, Sky says the 10-20% of more sensitive items which will retain their protection includes beef, lamb, dairy and as well as cars and some lines of textiles. (Sky News, The BBC, The Telegraph)

Growth came close to stalling in Britain last month, despite a rebound in the powerhouse services sector that gave the pound a lift. The full monthly set of purchasing managers indices, a key barometer of private sector activity, suggested that the economy has slowed from 0.2% growth in the final quarter of 2018 to only 0.1% and that employment is falling at the fastest rate in nine years. (The Times £)

Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s biggest brewer, plans to replace chairman Olivier Goudet next month amid concern that his role at acquisitive investment group JAB Holdings has become a conflict of interest. (The Financial Times £)

Cigarette maker British American Tobacco is set to take a roughly £436m hit following a failed appeal against a landmark compensation court case in Canada. (The Financial Times £)

Mark Carney has urged the government to stop issuing inflation-linked gilts using the discredited retail prices index and to start using the consumer prices index instead. (The Times £)

The booze cruise is back in fashion as shoppers stock up on cheap wine from across the Channel before the Brexit deadline on 29 March. Sales at Majestic Wine’s Calais stores soared 49% last month and pre-orders are up 78% in March as shoppers take advantage of France’s low alcohol taxes while they can. (The Guardian)