4 Mar 2013

Retail pick-up expected to boost Warehouse earnings

10:35 pm on 4 March 2013

A pick-up in retail spending is expected to boost earnings at The Warehouse though analysts will be closely monitoring margins and its recent acquisition, Noel Leeming.

The Warehouse will report its half year earnings on Thursday.

In August the retailer forecast its annual profit would beat last year's underlying profit of $65.1 million.

The country's largest listed firm has struggled in recent years and has refurbished stores, cut costs and expanded its range to boost earnings.

The changes included buying electronics and home appliance chain Noel Lemming for $65 million,

Craigs Investment Partners head of private wealth Mark Lister said economic activity and retail sales have lifted, as shown in data of other retailers such as Hallensteins, and The Warehouse should also benefit from the uplift.

He said any signs that retailers have been able to increase sales without having to discount too aggressively would be positive.

Mr Lister says other areas to watch include what's happening with The Warehouse's acquisition of Noel Leeming, and how its their apparel section fares.