Stocks of the Hour: Woolworths, Coles, Premier Investments

Supermarket giant Woolworths (ASX:WOW) has emerged as a rival buyer for Priceline owner Australian Pharmaceutical Industries with a $870 million offer, a move that could see Woolies spread its wings into the healthcare space. The bid is a counter to a $760 million offer from Wesfarmers (ASX:WES), the owner of Bunnings and Officeworks. Shares in Woolworths (ASX:WOW) closed 0.4 per cent higher at $39.99.

Meanwhile, rival Coles (ASX:COL) has been taken to court by the Fair Work Commission, which claims the supermarket giant underpaid 7,800 staff last year by $115 million. Shares in Coles (ASX:COL) closed 0.5 per cent lower at $17.65.

Premier Investments (ASX:PMV), the owner of six brands including Just Jeans, and Peter Alexander said in a trading update that sales are on its way out of the red. Over the past three weeks, stores around the globe have progressively re-opened, with sales up 10.1 per on the same three weeks compared to last year. Shares in Premier Investments (ASX:PMV) closed 0.8 per cent lower at $29.98.

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