The instability that currently surrounds the global economy conditioned the results of the large Spanish companies during the first quarter of the year. The firms that make up the Ibex 35 reaped profits of 9,451 million profit between January and March, which is 15% less than the 11,130 million obtained in the same period of 2018, according to the data sent by these companies to the CNMV .
The firms of the Spanish stock exchange thus maintain the trend shown already in 2018, when they obtained 39.187 million euros of profit, 2.6% less than the 40.238 million obtained the previous year, in 2017. With this result, the Selective Spanish companies broke with several years to the upside, in which they were driven by the recovery of the national market.
Now the context seems to have changed. Although the current result does not include Inditex, which has an independent fiscal quarter and will present its quarterly accounts next June, it makes clear that phenomena such as the economic slowdown, the commercial war and the oil swings are already taking their toll on the large Business. "The slowdown is felt very quickly in companies because they are almost instantaneous transmitters of uncertainty," explains the director of financial studies at Funcas, Santiago Carbó, who stresses that "the fall in benefits has been widespread throughout Europe and also in the United States. United".
The Spanish stock market is also experiencing this particular decline in profits, although among its companies only Ferrovial, affected by a provision of 345 million to cover possible losses in some works contracts in the United States, closed the quarter in red.
Among the rest, the fall in the profits of companies such as ArcelorMittal and IAG stands out. The first has gone from earning more than one billion euros to just 376. And the fact that countries such as China, Turkey and Russia are not obliged to meet the environmental requirements imposed by the European Union lowers steelmaking in these countries and allows them to sell it cheaper than companies that do in the Old Continent, such as ArcelorMittal. Added to this is a drop in demand caused by the slowdown.
In the case of IAG, the Spanish-British holding company that includes airlines such as Iberia and Vueling, the decrease in profit (91%) was motivated, among other factors, by the rise in oil, which accumulates a rise in more than 30% so far this year. In fact, other aviation giants such as Lufthansa have closed this period with losses.
The bank has also seen its profits reduced. Santander, BBVA and Bankia have gained around 10% less, while Caixabank has been unmarked with a 24% less profit and Sabadell «alone» reduced its results by 0.4%. Each entity has suffered specific circumstances (write-downs, falls in revenues …), to which has been added a common condition: the depreciation of the public debt portfolios, which have a large presence in the bank's balance sheet.
On the other hand, the energy sector has benefited from the situation, with markets such as Brazil recovering and renewables upwards. Iberdrola, Naturgy and Acciona have clearly improved their profits, while Repsol practically matched the results achieved during the first quarter of 2018, when the increase in the price of oil was even higher. Meanwhile, Endesa reduced its profit, affected by the volatility of the electricity market.
Also the socimis as Merlin and Colonial have been penalized by the comparison with the first quarter of 2018. And is that the income generated by real estate as the offices have begun to moderate in recent months after growing strongly.
The results of the first quarter, however, have not had a significant impact on the Ibex's price. Analysts such as Antonio Sales, of the online broker XTB, assure that "the market expected a greater reduction in profits, mainly due to tariff tensions".
"Investors have assumed that a deceleration is going to take place, but the latest macroeconomic data from the United States are against this thesis," says Javier Niederleytner, a professor at the Institute of Stock Market Studies. In his opinion, the business stop generated by the general elections in Spain also "has" conditioned a good number of operations ".
However, for Niederleytner, the uncertainty unleashed by the US-US trade war rises above all other factors. and China, "which is causing companies to make more conservative provisions and is distorting exchange rates." . (tagsToTranslate) companies (t) ibex (t) benefits