Department giant Myer has reported a 37 per cent drop in first half profit, weighed down by restructuring cost, redundancies and the exit of Apple products and Country Road Group brands.
The market remains almost certain the Reserve Bank will act to cushion the impact of the coronavirus by cutting the cash rate to a record low 0.5 per cent.
Supermarket giant Coles is the latest major retailer to be caught up in an underpayment scandal, with the company expecting a $20 million hit after underpaying managers at its supermarkets and liquor division over the past six years.
Commonwealth Bank has beaten market expectations with a $4.48 billion first-half cash profit amid pressure from record low interest rates, bushfire impacts and rising costs.
Bushfires and Australia’s embrace of the November Black Friday sales has taken a worse-than-expected toll on December retail trade, with cafes and restaurants particularly affected in a 0.5 per cent monthly spending drop.
November’s Black Friday sales fuelled a better-than-expected retail turnover for the month, but economists are wary of how much the 0.9 per cent increase will take away from December trading.