The Coles Group Ltd (ASX: COL) share price has been struggling in September.
At the time of writing, shares in the supermarket and liquor retailer are trading for $17.05 – down 0.06% on Friday’s close. That’s despite the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) rising a pretty healthy 0.76%.
Over the course of the month, it’s even bleaker for Coles. Shares in the company are down 4.6% while the ASX 200 is only 1.2% lower.
So, what’s going on with Coles? Let’s take a closer look.
Lockdowns are ending soon
One reason for the sluggish Coles share price of late may be because investors believe the COVID-19 gravy train for consumer staples is coming to an end.
Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW), Coles’ main competitor, has also seen a similar slump. Its share price is down 4.5% over the course of a month.
While the majority of Australians are currently in lockdown, this is poised to end soon. The New South Wales, Victorian, and ACT governments have released roadmaps for ending stay-at-home restrictions. On current projections, these jurisdictions should be leaving lockdown sometime between mid and late October.
Hard lockdowns have historically been a boon for consumer staples. As consumer options are limited and people are confined to their homes, sales at supermarkets do very well.
In its full-year results, Coles reported record revenue, earnings, net profit, and final dividend, fully franked, of 61 cents per share. This was up 6.1% on the prior corresponding period (pcp). The Coles share price rose on the announcement.
These results came off the back of an exceptional FY20 for the company. Sales rose a record 6.9% for the period. Profit was also up to new levels.
With lockdowns eventually coming to an end, investors may be looking to get out while they’re ahead.
Coles share price snapshot
Over the past 12 months, the Coles share price has decreased around 2%. This is vastly under the performance of the ASX 200.
Over the last 6 months, however, its shares have increased by 6.79%. The 52-week high is $18.94 per share and the 52-week low is $15.28 per share.
Coles has a market capitalisation of approximately $23 billion.