Companies across industries anticipating COVID-19 to take a toll on earnings, says GlobalData

An uncertain business environment on the back of the COVID-19 outbreak is prompting companies to withdraw or revise their guidance, outlook and earnings estimates, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Aurojyoti Bose, Lead Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “The outbreak and its potential impact on the economy and businesses is weighing heavily on corporate sentiments with several companies anticipating earnings to be affected in the coming quarters. This is prompting companies to revisit the financial targets set for 2020.” 

Companies across diverse industries such as the automotive, aerospace and defense, consumer packaged goods, food services, retailing, construction, financial services and technology sectors in multiple geographies have already started revising 2020 outlook/earnings estimates, while some other companies are resorting to withdrawal of financial guidance for 2020, as tracked by GlobalData’s news database.

French construction company Bouygues and UK-based foodservice company Domino’s Pizza withdrew their 2020 guidance in April 2020, while French consumer packaged goods company Loreal and US home appliance manufacturer Whirlpool withdrew 2020 guidance in March. On the other hand, some companies are revising their quarterly guidance.

In March, aerospace and defense company Safran said that it may experience 5% decline in its revenue in Q1. During the same month, social media and tech giant Facebook said that it is experiencing decline in advertisement revenue despite growth in usage.

Financial services providers such as Mastercard, American Express and VISA; automotive companies such as Ford; and retailing chains such as Target and Levi Strauss are also among the key names to join the league of companies withdrawing/revising guidance, outlook and earnings estimates due to COVID-19 outbreak.

Bose concludes: “More companies are likely to follow suit now that the filings season is on its peak and the virus has spread to several countries.”

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