Forget e-tailers, Gerry Harvey has hit out at Treasurer Wayne Swan, lamenting the misery Aussie retailers are feeling at present.
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“We’re having a horrible time in retail … there’s certainly no bounce in our step,” Harvey Norman boss Gerry Harvey said.
This was in response to comments made by Treasurer Wayne Swan this week, saying Aussies should have a “bounce in their step” considering it is one of the only recession-free nations in the western world.
Swan’s comments came on the back of yesterday’s revelation the economy’s GDP grew to an impressive 1.3% in the March quarter, latest ABS stats show – a 0.6% rise on December’s figure.
This also marks a 4.3% lift year-on-year.
And even the Treasurer admitted he was surprised by the prosperous figures, added:
“Let’s make these figures an extraordinary circuit breaker. This tide of negativity, this relentless negativity from the doomsayers has to stop. It insults the hard work that so many Australians put in to make our economy strong.”
The main industry contributors to Gross Domestic Product were Mining (up 2.3%), Financial and insurance services (+1.7%) and Professional, scientific and technical services (+2.8%).
However, no sign of retail making any contribution to the country’s GDP, as every retailer from the high street to the sole trader are feeling the pinch as consumers play it safe with their cash.
Some retailers, including JB Hi-Fi, say 2012 may not be as gloomy as last year, noting sales have got incrementally better during Q1 2012.
Other big name retailers including Myer are also positive about the year ahead, amid a serious to its omni channel offering and e-commerrce site.
Harvey Norman recently reported a massive 8.1% sales slump and a 43.9% plunge in pre tax profits blaming falling demand for IT and consumer electronics.