Metro, the German grocery retailer, has missed its 6% sales target for its full year sales with a 5.5% increase to E16.8bn.

Its full year sales in Euro terms were up by 5.3% to E56.4bn, just under the 5.4% forecast, which implies a negative currency impact for the year.

Business for the last week of December came was below expectations due to poor pre-Christmas trading.

The company exceeded its store-opening target of 50 for Consumer Electronics stores, with a total of 69, seven of which were acquired. However, it fell behind its target of 40 new Cash & Carry stores with 33 actually built.

Shares in the company dropped 4.5% yesterday to E39.30.

Full details on its 2004 sales results will be released on 22 March.