(Reuters) – Concerns that extended factory lockdowns and social distancing rules will dent company profits prompted analysts to cut forecasts for Asian companies’ 2020 earnings by around 5.4% over the last month, Refinitiv data showed.
The reductions take the total cut in earnings estimates to 14.8% so far this year.
The companies most affected are those reliant on exports and on energy, following a collapse in oil prices and in fuel demand because of lockdown restrictions and border closures.
Graphic – Change in Asian companies profit estimates: https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/mkt/ygdvzynzlpw/Change%20in%20Asian%20companies%20profit%20estimates.jpg
In the last month, companies dependent on the energy sector faced a 17.8% cut in 2020 forecasts.
Companies in export-reliant economies, South Korea and Thailand, were also hit hard as their profit forecasts were reduced by about 9% and 8.3% respectively.
Both economies shrank in the last quarter, with South Korea recording its biggest contraction since 2008 as self-isolation measures reduced consumption and global trade slumped.
The profit forecast downgrades followed poor first-quarter earnings results for many Asian companies, which reported a 19% year-on-year fall in bottom line, Refinitiv data found.
The consumer discretionary sector, which includes companies selling non-essential durable items such as televisions and automobiles, also faced big downgrades, the data showed.
Graphic – Asian companies sector-wise profit estimates change: https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/mkt/qzjpqkoqnpx/Asian%20companies%20sector-wise%20profit%20estimates%20change.jpg
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