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JB Hi-Fi Shrugs Off Coronavirus Concerns After Hike In Shares

Electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi has dismissed fears about the impact on stock and supply from the Coronavirus outbreak and is defying forecasts for a drop in the Aussie dollar and a ‘retail recession’ in Australia.

Just yesterday, JB Hi-Fi recorded a 14.54 per cent increase in shares at its highest point after a 5.1 per cent revenue climb to $4 billion for the first half of 2020.

But on the broader economy, JB Hi-Fi chief executive Richard Murray said his concern was the possibility of the RBA imposing dramatic interest rate cuts, sending the wrong message to consumers and eroding confidence in the economy, he told ABC News.

(AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

‘I worry at times that the continued cutting of interest rates says to consumers, well, there’s something they should be worried, whereas at the moment I think the economy is in pretty good shape,’ Murray told senior business reporter for ABC News, Peter Ryan.

‘We’ve always said across the economy all we want is stable government policy, stable economic growth… From a stores perspective, absolutely haven’t seen any impact (from the bushfires and coronavirus)… across the board, the sales numbers has certainly don’t show it,’ Murray said.

If there is any supply shortage from the coronavirus outbreak in China, where most electronics manufacturers, including Foxconn, are located – it will be evident within four to six weeks, according to Murray.

‘As the factories re-open post-Chinese New Year, which has been extended, we’ll start to get a better sense of if some suppliers — that if they’ve been caught short. I think we’ll have a much better sense in four to six weeks, just as those factories re-open.’

Murray concluded that as long as the government implements policies and projects that create productivity for the economy, it will stimulate financial growth.

(AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

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