By Patrick Avenell

Harvey Norman’s profit for the first quarter of FY09 has dropped $32.6 million on the same period last year. This equates to a drop of almost 31.5 per cent.

In his weekly report to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), Harvey Norman chairman Gerry Harvey has provided real money figures on how the global economic crisis has directly hit the retail group’s bottom line.

“Unaudited preliminary accounts for the period 1 July 2008 to 30 September 2008 indicate profit before tax and minority reports for the consolidated entity of $71.0 million compared to $103.6 million for the corresponding prior period, a reduction of 31.5 per cent,” wrote Harvey to the ASX.

Harvey also reported that written sales for the 28 days up to 23 November 2008 (last Sunday) decreased by 3.1 per cent compared to the same period last year. This is down from last week’s 28 day report, which was a decrease of 0.8 per cent.