By Jonathan Davies

Morrisons chief executive Dalton Philips will leave the supermarket after another fall in sales.

It was announced that Philips would leave his post of five-years after the supermarket chain reported a 3.1% fall in like-for-like sales in the six weeks to January.

The Christmas figures were the latest in a long line of disappointing sales for Morrisons. Dalton Philips will stay on as chief executive until the company reveals its full year results in March.

The Morrisons board said it had already begun its search for Mr Philips replacement. Sir Ian Gibson, the supermarket's chairman, will also step down.

Andrew Higginson, the chairman-elect, said: "We need to return the business to growth. The board believes this is best done under new leadership."

In a statement Dalton Philips said he was "proud" of the work he'd done. "Over the last five years, we have made many improvements to the business and given Morrisons strong foundations for the future," he said.

Morrisons shares reacted well to the news, rising as much as 6% in early trading.

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