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Woolworths Sales Are Well Up

“Woolworths Ltd has reported an 18 per cent jump in first half sales and says it is well positioned to weather the current downturn in Australian retailing with strong second quarter sales in each of its divisions. Its businesses include supermarkets, Big W and Dick Smith Electronics with total sales for the second quarter jumping a significant 22.1% to $10.18 billion. The market pushed Woolworths shares up 3.7% following the announcement. Woolworths chief executive Roger Corbett is expecting a tougher peroiod ahead, when he says discretionary spending will feel the pinch. He expects tight discretionary spending to have less impact on Dick Smith Electronics than other retailers where purchases can be deferred. He said Australians are enormously technologically sensitive and spend less on traditional toys while spending more on electronic toys. Whilst many smaller retailers have experienced a retail slowdown as consumers reduce discretionary spending due to high petrol prices, Woolworths has been protected by its strength in food sales.”

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