THE NEWS WRAP: Myer reports longest sales growth period since 2006

Myer has reported its third consecutive quarter of sales growth, marking the longest number of consecutive growth quarters since the department store chain was taken over by private equity in 2006.


Myer chief executive Bernie Brookes said interim sales had risen 1.7% to $1.73 billion, lifting net profit slightly to $87.9 million, off the back of a well-planned and executed Christmas and Boxing Day sales period, although the outlook remains weak for the rest of 2013.


“There’s a lot of things heading in the right direction, but there’s still a long way to go forward,” Mr Brookes said.


Metcash to emphasise new product lines in convenience store market


Metcash is making a renewed push for the convenience store, milk bar and petrol station market, with the wholesaler emphasising new product lines in the face of intensifying competition from Cols and Woolworths.


“The value proposition we hold is our convenience store operators need to differentiate. Forget about milk, come up with fresh categories like ready-to-eat or ready-to-heat meals, gourmet sandwiches, so the time-poor consumer has a real choice of going into a convenience store and finding the offer,” said Metcash chief executive of convenience Peter Dubbelman.


Metcash is currently the supplier for 7-Eleven and IGA, with the wholesaler also hoping to win a major supply contract with BP.


Media reforms threaten Gillard’s leadership


The potential defeat of the Gillard government’s media reforms could be a trigger for a leadership showdown between Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd, with all seven cross-bench MPs angry at being pressured by the government over the issue.


Fairfax reports that support within Labor’s NSW Right faction has shifted substantially towards Rudd, with most now prepared to back a change in leadership in favour of the former prime minister.


“It’s the judgment thing again. [Gillard] has delayed and delayed and then, at five minutes to midnight, lands this,” one anonymous MP said.




The Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.49% to 14,527, marking its 10th consecutive day of gains. The Aussie dollar is up to US103.77 cents.


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