Hennes & Mauritz shares have hit rock bottom on the Stockholm stock exchange. Mild autumn weather and competition from American chain Gap has hit the company hard, according to Swedish pink Paper, Dagens Industri. 

On Wednesday the shares had fallen to153.50 Swedish kroner, which is 1.50 kroner below the company's previous low of 155 kroner. The rate later went up to reach 156.50 kroner.  

Times have been tough for the Swedish clothing chain, since a storming advance over the past years. Since new managing director Fabian Månsson took over leadership of the company in March 2000, the share price has fallen 45 per cent.

By Penny Leese