Profit warnings on the rise as global uncertainty hits home

Hunter Kelly, EY

Hunter Kelly, EY

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Profits warnings are on the rise both nationally and regionally, figures from EY show.

The professional services firm revealed six quoted companies in Yorkshire and the North East issued warnings between July and September, compared to four in the previous quarter and three in Q3 2014.

Nationally, warnings also rose by a third compared to the second quarter, with 79 profit warnings in Q3. This was up 10 year-on-year.

While the numbers of companies issuing statements in Yorkshire and the North East remains under the three-year average of seven per quarter, the national total is eight above the three-year average of 71.

Hunter Kelly, restructuring partner at EY in Yorkshire and the North East, said the region’s listed companies performed more in line with market expectations than the wider UK, as volatility in China, rumours of a US interest rate move and commodity supply and demand imbalances created uncertainty.

Looking ahead, he said: “With markets changing fast and companies’ profits being eroded, we expect to see a greater divide in corporate experiences.

“Even in the same sector, companies could have very different outlooks depending on their operational efficiency and ability to be fleet of foot.

“Many of the issues highlighted in recent profit warnings relate to long-term adjustments in global and sector growth patterns that will require companies to look beyond the current cycle and make longer term investments.”

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