Economy

Shoe is on another foot as Pacific Brands’ footwear business gets the boot; Auction volumes up 14% from last year: Midday Roundup

Kirsten Robb /

Retail group Pacific Brands will sell of its Brand Collective division, which owns shoe labels Volley and Grosby and has licences for Hush Puppies and Clarks shoes.

Pacific Brands, the parent company of manchester brand Sheridan and underwear giant Bonds, announced the sale in a statement to shareholders today.

“The company confirms that it is in discussions regarding a potential sale of its Brand Collective business. However, a transaction has not been agreed,” the group says.

“An announcement will be made by the company if and when agreement is reached.”

Brand Collective also holds the local licences for clothing brands Superdry and Mossimo, and operates the Shoe Warehouse and Shoe Superstore chains.

It’s the latest sell off for Pacific Brands, which let go of its iconic Australian brands Hard Yakka, King Gee and Stubbies in August.

Auction volumes up 14% from last year

The number of homes going under the hammer across Australia is up by 14% from last year, due to a spike in auctions in Sydney and Melbourne.

“Higher stock levels are providing increased opportunities for buyers in capital cities, especially in Melbourne,” RP Data housing market specialist Robert Larocca says in a statement.

But buyers are still meeting the supply with demand according to RP Data, which showed a preliminary clearance rate of 69% recorded this weekend from 3,210 auctions across capital cities, compared to 63.5% last week and 67.4% this time last year.

Sydney continued to show its strength with a clearance rate of 75.2% on 1333 properties, while Melbourne logged a solid 66.7% clearance on an impressive 1446 homes.

“Lower clearance rates have certainly been observed [in Melbourne] over the last three weeks,” Larocca says. “Analysis shows that they have returned to trend after what was in retrospect a strong early spring.”

New listings in Melbourne rose a notable 4.3% in the month, when seasonally adjusted.

Shares down on open

Aussie shares have traded lower this morning, despite a relatively steady finish to last week on international markets.

But CMC Markets chief analyst Ric Spooner says local investors will today be considering the impact of the soon-to-be-signed free trade agreement with China.

“Possible beneficiaries in the services sector might include a wide range of companies varying from tourist and hospital operators to fund managers,” Spooner says.

“The devil will be in the detail however and, in most cases, a lot of work will be required to convert theoretical opportunity to bankable results. Fund managers, for example are likely to be asking for changes to withholding tax arrangements to allow them to capitalise on the opportunity to manager funds for international clients.”

The S&P/ASX 200 benchmark was down 22.8 points to 5431.5 points at 12.04pm AEDT. On Friday, the Dow Jones closed 18.05 points lower, down 0.1% to 17634.7 points.

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Kirsten Robb

Kirsten Robb is a former journalist at SmartCompany. Previously, she worked at News Corp as a property reporter for Leader Newspapers and the Herald Sun, and holds a Masters of Journalism at Melbourne University.

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