Surprise retail sales figures light fire under consumer stocks

From Patrick Hatch at The Age:

A surprise jump in retail sales statistics lit a fire under Australia’s beleaguered discretionary retail stocks on Tuesday, making them some of the best performing companies on the ASX’s best day of the year so far.

Gain[s] were enjoyed across the sector as JB Hi-Fi shares closed up 5.29 per cent at $24.48 and Harvey Norman rose 5 per cent to $3.99…..

Apparel and accessory sales grew 1.3 per cent, but Australian Retailers Association chief executive Russell Zimmerman said that was likely driven by heavy discounting. Department stores still took a hit in May, with turnover falling 0.7 per cent.

“We think retailers have done it very tough in clothing and footwear. So to see it rise year-on-year we think that’s retailers discounting heavily to get consumers to buy,” Mr Zimmerman said.

Source: Surprise retail sales figures light fire under consumer stocks

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