Auto Shows Continental shares on the upswing: Continental is not slipping as deep into the loss zone as feared

19:20  21 july  2020
19:20  21 july  2020 Source:   finanzen.net

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The automotive supplier Continental slipped deep into the red in the second quarter, but said it did better than analysts had expected.

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Consolidated sales fell by almost 40 percent to 6.620 billion euros, as the DAX group announced. The adjusted EBIT margin was minus 9.6 percent after Continental had reached plus 6.7 percent a year ago.

Free cash flow before acquisitions and carve-out effects amounted to minus EUR 1.782 billion, compared to minus EUR 29 million in the second quarter of 2019. The decrease is mainly due to the drop in EBIT and negative working capital effects. The latter result from the volatility of sales in the last weeks of the second quarter. However, Conti expects that they will neutralize themselves again if the course of business continues.

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As of June 30, 2020, the company had a liquidity cushion of EUR 10.144 billion, of which cash and cash equivalents amounting to EUR 2.456 billion and committed, unused credit lines totaling EUR 7.689 billion.

Although the business development at Continental improved significantly in the course of the second quarter, the group still considers the economic environment to be very uncertain due to the ongoing pandemic. For this reason, the company continues to forego an outlook for the 2020 financial year.

Business collapsed across all lines in the second quarter. The Automotive Technologies division's sales fell 45.6 percent to EUR 2.560 billion, and the adjusted EBIT margin was minus 18.1 percent. Sales in the Rubber Technologies division decreased by a third to EUR 2.962 billion, the adjusted EBIT margin was 1.2 percent. Sales in the Powertrain Technologies division fell by 40.8 percent to 1.131 billion euros, the adjusted EBIT margin was minus 16.3 percent.

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The semi-annual financial report for the 2020 financial year will be published on August 5, 2020.

quarterly report provides strong upturn in Continental shares

Surprisingly good quarterly figures from Continental gave the shares of the auto supplier and tire manufacturer a strong boost in XETRA trading on Tuesday. With an increase of 3.70 percent to EUR 91.42 at times, they were among the top values ​​in the very strong DAX . Analysts unanimously praised the key data. However, some also pointed out a few negative aspects and emphasized the caution of the management, which still gave no outlook for the year as a whole.

With the price jump on this day, the Conti papers managed to clearly differentiate themselves from the 21-day line for the short-term trend. The price also approached the 200-day line, which currently runs at around 97.85 euros. It gives investors interested in chart technology the expectation for the longer-term trend and is still pointing downwards.

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Both analyst Gungun Verma from the US bank Goldman Sachs and Jose Asumendi from JPMorgan praised the development of Conti's margins in the second quarter. Asumendi wrote that the margin loss in the car division was significantly smaller than expected. At the same time, he also highlighted the Powertrain drive business within the automotive division. A dealer, however, praised the small positive result in the tire business after sales there declined less than expected.

sales and earnings of the auto supplier have exceeded expectations in all business areas, Jefferies analyst Sascha Gommel also stated in an initial assessment. The development in the automotive business including powertrain make him confident for new growth according to COVID-19. As a drop of bitterness, however, Gommel referred to the free cash flow (FCF), which is of interest to shareholders and has an impact on dividend payments. This fell well short of expectations.

Before acquisitions and costs for the independence of the drive technology, almost 1.8 billion euros in free funds flowed in the group and thus significantly more than experts thought. Most of them - like JPMorgan expert Asumendi - had expected around a billion outflows. By the middle of the year, the liquidity cushion, including unused loans, was 10.1 billion euros, of which 2.5 billion euros were freely available liquid funds. In May and June, Conti issued three bonds worth more than 2.1 billion euros and increased existing credit lines by 3 billion euros.

Asumendi, who only described the FCF as "significantly weaker" at first glance, sees no long-term FCF problem at Conti. The company could not reduce its investments as much as expected, he wrote. The high capital outflows from working capital were also due to liabilities, which should change again in the second half of the year. He therefore still expects a small positive FCF amount on a full year basis, even if this becomes more difficult against the background of the first half of the year. (Dow Jones) / (dpa-AFX)

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