By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY: Shares in Clive Peeters have jumped over 10 per cent today, with a number of positive articles in the Australian Financial Review a possible contributor.

After closing last Friday at 18.5 cents, Clive Peeters has surged 13.5 per cent in Monday trading, to sit at 21 cents shortly before close. This upward movement in the retail group’s share price correlates to a positive article on the beleaguered retailer in last Friday’s Financial Review. In this article, the traditionally press-shy managing director Greg Smith portrayed the group as financially secure and poised for future improvements.

In the article by Simon Evans, Smith addressed industry rumours concerning Clive Peeters’ standing with suppliers. For at least a year, there has been innuendo that Clive Peeters has been unable to pay its suppliers’ invoices. Smith totally rejected this assertion.

“We’ve been the victim of some unfounded industry speculation. We pay our suppliers on time,” Smith told the AFR.

Smith’s penchant for avoiding media enquiries is in contrast to the openness of his rivals Richard Uechtritz, of JB Hi-Fi, and Harvey Norman’s David Ackery. The success of this coverage in improving Clive Peeters’ share price may persuade Smith to adjust his stance.