50% of listed firms in Qatar showed resilience; KPMG Qatar

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Qatar Central Bank
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In a report on listed companies’ earnings for the first 6 months ending in June 2020, KPMG Qatar has remarked that almost 50 percent of listed companies in the country showed their ability to sustain economic pressure and progress during the pandemic.

The global audit and consulting firm reported that while 11 listed companies published growth in earnings, 13 listed companies had largely consistent earnings with 25 listed companies reporting a drop in earnings during the first half of the year.

The report said, “A combined total profit reported by 49 listed companies during the half-year ended June 2020 declined 21 percent to touch $4.34 billion while their total profit for the half-year ended in June 2019 was at $5.47 billion.

“Listed companies operating in consumer, transport and logistics, utility, telecommunication and healthcare sectors showed resilience, whereas listed companies operating in banking and financial services, industrial and manufacturing, diversified businesses predominantly trading, retail and related services, insurance, energy and natural resources (ENR) and real estate sectors were challenged by COVID-19 economic pressure,” the report added.

An earlier report from QNB Financial Services (QNBFS) stated that Qatari companies have outperformed their GCC peers and remained resilient in the face of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

QNBFS said that it remains bullish on Qatari stocks in the long-term given their defensive characteristics backed by strong fundamentals, reasonable valuation, and the government’s support packages.

“We continue to believe the dual headwinds of coronavirus malaise and oil price volatility will impact Qatari equities, albeit to a lesser extent against their regional peers, as has been the case since the beginning of 2020. So far, year-to-date, the decline for the QE Index has been 10.6 percent, outperforming the 11.9-24.7 percent declines seen in other major GCC stock markets,” QNBFS said.