JB Hi-Fi says first half profit rises 37 pct

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Both total and comparable sales for the Australian segment fell compared to January 2017, and sales from The Good Guys were particularly disappointing compared to the same month previous year.

Gross profit for the period climbed 9.8% to $545.3 million.

During the period, JB Hi-Fi opened up seven new Australian stores, plus two new The Good Guys outlets.

Sales in the half-year jumped 41 per cent. The segment only contributed 3.4% of total sales for the period.

Australian electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi Ltd posted a record first-half net profit, but spooked investors by warning that earnings growth would slow amid fierce competition, knocking its shares down by more than 8 percent.

The company now expects its full-year profit to be in the $235-$240 million range - beating its $172 million result last year.

Revenue in the first half to December was up 41% to a record $3.69 billion.

JB Hi-Fi added that sales from its appliances chain, The Good Guys, which it bought in 2016, grew just 1.8 percent on a comparable store basis in the six-month period.

The retailer has declared an interim dividend of 86 cents (fully franked) per share - a notable 19% increase from the previous corresponding period.

"It was another strong result for the JB HI-FI business in Australia, particularly through the important November and December periods", said the JB HI-Fi chief executive Richard Murray.

The market is already cautious on retail companies due to the current economic climate in Australia, and any sign of weakness will likely result in selling pressure, as we've seen this morning.

Following on from the acquisition of The Good Guys, total group sales are forecast to be around $6.85 billion.

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