Australian retail sales drop: How have shares of retailers reacted?

Summary

  • The sales volume dropped by 0.5% in the March 2021 quarter.
  • The announcement had negative impact on the shares of retailers.
  • However, Woolworths continued to rally on back of demerger plan.

Retail sales dropped by 0.5% in the March 2021 quarter, as per the data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) on Tuesday. The drop in the March quarter comes after the country clocked a 2.4% rise in the numbers during the December 2020 quarter. The announcement has taken the sheen away from the shares of Australian retailers, with many erasing their morning gains.

Here is how four major stocks of Australian retailers have reacted to the tepid sales numbers:

Woolworths Group Limited (ASX:WOW): The shares of the AU$50 billion retail giant continued to rally despite Australia’s disappointing retail numbers, and were up by 233 basis points. The shares are primarily rallying on the back of demerger announcement of Endeavour Group by the company.

Woolworths’ shareholders will retain all their existing WOW shares, the company said. Also, the shareholders will receive one Endeavour Group share for every Woolworths Group share.

Coles Group Limited (ASX:COL): The share of AU$21 billion retailer were trading 6 bps down, despite opening in green in the morning.

Good Read: Why Investors Are Fixing Their Gaze At Coles (ASX:COL)

Harvey Norman Holdings Limited (ASX:HVN): Despite notching up early gains, the shares of integrated retail company were trading flat after the ABS retail numbers were announced. The current market capitalisation of the company stands at AU$6.51 billion.

Wesfarmers Limited (ASX:WES): The company worth AU$61.52 billion has focus on retail operations covering home improvement and office supplies. After the announcement of retail sale numbers by the ABS, the shares of Wesfarmers erased some of its early morning gains and were trading with the gain of 81 basis points at the time of filing this copy.

Also Read: Three ASX-listed retail shares going great guns in 2021


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