BMW.DE - Bayerische Motoren Werke Aktiengesellschaft

XETRA - XETRA Delayed Price. Currency in EUR
+0.22 (+0.47%)
At close: 5:35PM CEST
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Previous Close45.51
Bid45.58 x 0
Ask45.50 x 0
Day's Range43.93 - 46.26
52 Week Range36.60 - 78.30
Avg. Volume2,509,451
Market Cap29.662B
Beta (5Y Monthly)1.29
PE Ratio (TTM)6.12
Earnings DateN/A
Forward Dividend & Yield2.50 (5.49%)
Ex-Dividend DateMay 15, 2020
1y Target EstN/A
  • Bloomberg

    Who Will Pay the Car Industry’s Bills This Time?

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- At the rate the coronavirus is spreading, car companies won’t be making vehicles or big profits for a while. Who’s going to foot their bills in the event of an economic downturn like 2008? A financial crisis-like bailout won’t be a good look.Heading into this slump, carmakers were hardly exercising restraint, splashing out on big, tech-savvy investments and electric vehicles. Many global brands like Ford Motor Co. botched their bets in China, the world’s largest market, and have struggled to keep up there as it weakened.Now, from the U.S. to India, Vietnam and Thailand and elsewhere, auto giants are shutting down production. It means more than turning the lights off. Sales are expected to fall almost 15% this year to fewer than 80 million vehicles, according S&P Global Ratings. In the U.S., the drop may be the biggest since 2009. Even as China tries to get back to work, auto and parts factories will likely run at low capacity.The pandemic is showing up vulnerabilities on balance sheets. Over the past two days, Moody’s Investors Services downgraded auto manufacturers including Toyota Motor Corp. and BMW AG, and put several others on review, including General Motors Co., citing “weaknesses in their credit profiles including their exposure to final consumer demand for light vehicles.” S&P downgraded Ford to junk status and put Toyota on review.The billions of dollars of cash that car companies are sitting on may give investors comfort that contingency plans are in place. But automakers run cash-intensive businesses, paying suppliers and funding operations. Having a cushion helps in tough times, but not for long.Unlike other cash-heavy enterprises, most also run so-called negative working capital, meaning their current liabilities are higher than current assets. A dollar upfront is better than a dollar in a few weeks. The reason they can do this is because they get paid by their dealers before delivery – especially in the U.S, which is a credit-driven market.That’s all good when the cars are selling. But when things turn down, these companies start burning through cash quickly, as my colleague Chris Bryant has written. Pre-virus sales outlooks were already poor. The trouble with Covid-19 is that no one knows how long it will last or when buyers will return. That makes it harder to say how much cash they’ll need, part of the reason some are proactively drawing down their credit lines.In the current gloom, it’s worth looking at how far every dollar of sales goes toward meeting operational expenses and paying down short-term debt, or the ratio of working capital to sales. Companies still have to meet their payables, but inventories aren’t being drained. During the financial crisis a decade ago, Bloomberg Intelligence’s Joel Levington notes the ratio started slightly negative and rose to 5%. If that occurred again, he estimates, an average automaker would need an additional $6.9 billion of capital. With cash needs cropping up across the economy, it’s unclear where that money would come from.The descent can be quick: At the height of the crisis, Japanese automakers in the U.S. ran negative free cash flows of 830 billion yen ($7.7 billion), according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc., dropping from close to positive 2 trillion yen. In China, cash flows are highly correlated to profitability. If you’re running losses, working capital will bite. The cascading effect of a cash crunch could run far and wide. Some large Chinese auto parts manufacturers rely on international automakers for 30% to 50% of their business to generate positive operating cash flow. “This could change quickly,” says Jefferies Financial Group Inc. analyst Alexious Lee.Then there’s the debt coming due. Automakers haven’t piled on large amounts except for their financing arms. But, per Levington, as of last week $179 billion of debt had a 30%-plus chance of default. The convulsions in markets will make it more expensive to pay. The likes of Tata Motors Ltd.-owned Jaguar Land Rover Automotive Plc have seen their bonds trade down to as low as 59 cents on the dollar.  Across the sector, more than $100 billion matures this year with almost 40% rated below A, he notes.Financing arms, a big source of problems in 2008, have again become major drivers of operating profits. If China is any indication for how quickly things can sour, defaults on auto loan-backed securities rose sharply last month and prepayments fell to a record low.The position of car giants is now reminiscent of the pre-financial crisis years. When Detroit’s automakers were on the verge of collapse, the U.S. government braved public rebuke and stepped in with $82 billion in various forms to avoid the economic pain of collapse. The bailout remains debated, but one thing is clear: Carmakers will need help this time, too. While Washington’s new $2 trillion stimulus could indirectly benefit the sector, prolonged pain would need more support.Cars may have gotten better since the last crisis, but automakers haven’t readied their balance sheets or operations for one as severe as this is turning out to be.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Anjani Trivedi is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering industrial companies in Asia. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal. For more articles like this, please visit us at now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Auto Giants Across the Globe Warned of Coming ‘Credit Shock’

    Auto Giants Across the Globe Warned of Coming ‘Credit Shock’

    (Bloomberg) -- BMW AG, Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. were downgraded by Moody’s Investors Service and their major European, U.S. and Japanese competitors were put under review for possible cuts as the coronavirus pandemic raises risks for automakers worldwide.BMW, the European carmaker with the best credit profile, was dropped one level to A2, while Ford’s rating fell to Ba2, another rung into junk. Moody’s put General Motors Co. under review along with Daimler AG, Jaguar Land Rover Automotive Plc, PSA Group, Renault SA, Volkswagen AG, Volvo Car AB and McLaren Holdings Ltd. In Japan, Toyota, Nissan Motor Co. and Honda Motor Co. were downgraded on Thursday.The rapid spread of the outbreak, a deteriorating economic outlook, falling oil prices and asset price declines are “creating a severe and extensive credit shock,” Moody’s said in a statement. “The combined credit effects of these developments are unprecedented.”Auto manufacturers and their parts suppliers have halted factories on both sides of the Atlantic amid government measures to isolate populations and restrict travel. The wave of work stoppages occurred as the viral epicenter moved to Europe from China and intensified in the U.S., halting sales and rippling through supply chains.Demand will drop “meaningfully” over the coming months, especially in Europe and North America, Moody’s said. It anticipates global demand will shrink about 14% in 2020 and could slump by roughly a third in the second quarter.‘Under Pressure’Japanese automakers are especially vulnerable because of the pandemic exacerbating “pronounced cyclical downturns and changing consumer demand,” Moody’s said, leaving them “vulnerable to shifts in market sentiment in these unprecedented operating conditions.”Toyota, which had the strongest credit profile among Japan’s auto companies, was cut to A1 from Aa3, while Honda was downgraded to A3 from A2. Nissan, which has seen decade-low profits and management turmoil since the November 2018 arrest of former Chairman Carlos Ghosn, was already the lowest in terms of credit ratings out of Japan’s top three carmakers. Moody’s cut Nissan’s rating to Baa3 from Baa1.Moody’s for now assumes GM and Ford’s full-year shipments will drop by as much as 18%, though it warned “risk to the downside is considerable.” GM shares pared a gain of as much as 9.6% to close up only 1.8% in New York. Ford, which had surged as much as 19% intraday, finished the day with an 8.9% advance.S&P Global Ratings still ranks Ford one step above junk. On Wednesday, the firm also put GM’s rating on watch for negative action.“Automaker credit rankings are increasingly under pressure -- another negative catalyst for bondholders -- and we suspect more downgrades loom globally, with Ford and Renault possibly becoming fallen angels,” Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Joel Levington said in a note.While GM probably can avoid a junk rating, falling into speculative grade causes problems for automakers’ lending units, Levington said by phone. Both GM and Ford get lots of cash from writing auto loans, and lower-rated debt makes borrowing more expensive.“It’s not the end of the world if one of these companies falls into high-yield,” he said. “But both Ford and GM make a lot of money from financing and their margins would go down.”State SupportFrench Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire this week pointed to the country’s auto and aeronautics industries as needing government support. The state has holdings in Renault and PSA. While Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard has dismissed a re-nationalization of the carmaker, he told Le Parisien the firm may ask for government guarantees. Renault shares rose as much as 2.8% in Paris.VW brand’s global sales chief Juergen Stackmann told Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in interview he expects a “normalization” of the situation on the German manufacturer’s home turf in the summer. The coronavirus won’t disappear entirely by then, but society and the economy can’t cope with a shutdown that lasts for longer, he said.The outlier in Moody’s latest report was Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, placed under review “with uncertain direction.” The Italian-American manufacturer faces the same daunting situation as peers, but the planned merger with PSA might potentially result in a higher rating of the combined group than Fiat Chrysler’s current standalone rating, it said.BMW’s downgrade was driven by its already weak standing within the A1 ratings category, the agency said.The Munich-based carmaker last week warned that both profit and sales would fall significantly this year as the pandemic disrupts production and supplies. The company has idled its European plants, as well as its largest plant in the U.S. in South Carolina, for more than two weeks.(Updates with Japanese automakers’ rating cuts.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Moody's

    BMW Bank of North America -- Moody's downgrades BMW Bank of North America's long-term bank deposit rating to Aa3 from Aa2 and places ratings on review for downgrade, following actions on the rating for the parent

    Moody's Investors Service, ("Moody's") downgraded its ratings for BMW Bank of North America (BMW Bank), including its long-term bank deposit rating to Aa3 from Aa2 and issuer rating to A3 from A2. The bank's baa2 baseline credit assessment (BCA), and all long-term ratings, were placed on review for downgrade, whereas the bank's Prime-1 short-term bank deposit rating was affirmed.

  • Moody's

    Mercedes-Benz Australia/Pacific Pty. Ltd -- Moody's places ratings of 7 European Automotive manufacturers on review for downgrade one issuer for direction uncertain; downgrades one issuer

    Rating Action: Moody's places ratings of 7 European Automotive manufacturers on review for downgrade one issuer for direction uncertain; downgrades one issuer. Global Credit Research- 25 Mar 2020. Frankfurt ...

  • Bloomberg

    The World's Biggest Companies Should Plan for the Worst

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Is the coronavirus a temporary shock or will it do lasting damage to the global economy? This question will dictate the severity of the measures companies are taking to cut costs and preserve cash, and determine the shape and effectiveness of government bailouts.The short answer is: companies don’t know yet, because none of them have dealt with a pandemic of this magnitude before. Hence their early assessments of the seriousness of the problem have been quite different to those of their peers; and they’re being revised continually, mostly not for the better.Last week some carmakers still sounded relatively optimistic, pointing to the reopening of dealerships in China and signs that sales there are rebounding as new coronavirus cases slow. BMW AG thinks the improvement in China could serve as a blueprint for what might happen in the rest of the world as governments implement draconian measures to contain the virus. That could explain why the German auto giant still plans to pay its shareholders 1.65 billion euros ($1.8 billion) of dividends. Volvo Cars is planning on a “return to normality” after Easter.While the aircraft maker Airbus SE is scrapping its dividend and has beefed up credit lines, it’s poised to resume partial production at its French and Spanish sites this week and points to signs of recovery in domestic Chinese air traffic. This somewhat reassuring message has been contradicted, however, by Deutsche Lufthansa AG’s chief executive officer, Carsten Spohr, who has warned that when the coronavirus is over “there will be a smaller global economy and that means smaller airlines.” The implication of his message was the German carrier should start preparing now for that lower level of demand.Such divergent views reflect partly how the travel and hospitality sectors will be hit harder by the virus than other parts of the manufacturing world. Customers needing a new car might delay their purchase but they won’t do so indefinitely. Eventually their old vehicle will wear out. In contrast, consumers probably won’t take two summer holidays next year just because they didn’t have one this time. Until the new coronavirus is fully under control, they might not book an overseas leisure trip at all.It’s possible too that some industrial executives (beyond those exposed to travel) are underestimating the difficulty of containing Covid-19, including its impact on demand and supply chains. While Japanese schoolchildren are set to return to class in April, virus cases in Hong Kong have started increasing again. If governments keep having to reimpose quarantines until a vaccine is found —  which might take more than a year — a swift rebound could prove illusory.Even if companies can keep their own factories running, the flow of crucial components and systems would be interrupted by further outbreaks or countermeasures. When China quarantined a large part of its population, the rest of the global economy was still humming. But as the U.S. follows Europe in ordering many citizens to stay at home, the impact on consumption and employment will be severe. Germany’s gross domestic product is expected to contract by as much as 5% this year, while the U.S. jobless rate is set to rocket.Much will depend of course on the success of governments in channeling money to vulnerable citizens and businesses, and what form that assistance takes. If companies have to cope with months of negligible revenues, government ownership of large chunks of the economy may become unavoidable. Businesses borrowing more would only worsen corporate solvency issues.Given such acute uncertainty, companies should hope for the best but plan for the worst.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Chris Bryant is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering industrial companies. He previously worked for the Financial Times.For more articles like this, please visit us at now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Here’s what it will take for Tesla’s stock to recover from the coronavirus selloff

    Here’s what it will take for Tesla’s stock to recover from the coronavirus selloff

    As we have learned the hard way over the last month, previous sales forecasts or planned product launches mean squat in the face of lockstep declines for the entire S&P 500 index (SPX) Heck, there are no guarantees that even well-capitalized blue-chip stocks will bounce back anytime soon, let alone a “risk on” momentum play like Tesla. Well-timed capital raise: Back in February, Tesla raised $2 billion in a secondary offering of shares at a whopping $767. Considering Elon Musk & Co. would raise only about half of that figure at current prices, this well-timed move may prove one of the things that allows Tesla to stay on track.

  • Reuters

    U.S. auto industry backs tax relief, delaying USMCA start after coronavirus

    Groups representing major automakers and suppliers asked U.S. lawmakers on Friday to consider new tax relief and delay the start of a new trade deal as auto sales decline as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The Alliance for Automotive Innovation -- representing General Motors Co, Volkswagen AG, BMW, Toyota Motor Corp and others -- and the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) in a joint letter seen by Reuters backed "key actions" by U.S. lawmakers to help "ensure that sufficient liquidity remains available in the markets."

  • Bloomberg

    SoftBank-Backed Getaround Looks for a Buyer as Demand Evaporates

    (Bloomberg) -- The car-sharing company Getaround is actively seeking a sale as the coronavirus outbreak has sent demand plunging and left the startup dangerously short on cash, according to people familiar with the matter.The startup, whose backers include SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision Fund, has been one of the two leading companies in the peer-to-peer car-sharing industry, where people can rent out their private vehicles online for hours or days. Investors had valued it at well over $1 billion. Getaround has said it has 5 million users.But travel companies have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic as large swaths of the global population have been ordered to stay mostly indoors. If Getaround cannot find a buyer or an infusion of cash, the startup may consider bankruptcy protection, said one of the people familiar with the matter, all of whom asked not to be identified because the information is private. Other backers of Getaround include Menlo Ventures and Toyota Motor Corp.A spokeswoman for Getaround wrote in an email: “Like many other businesses, we are dealing with the impacts of the Covid-19 outbreak, both in the U.S. and Europe, and we are evaluating the appropriate steps to manage this unprecedented event. This includes the support of our investors.”Economic impacts from the virus have been far-reaching and immediate, and startups have been particularly vulnerable. Many are unprofitable and lack a financial cushion. The trouble among SoftBank’s portfolio of startups has heightened concerns over the conglomerate’s creditworthiness and the value of its investments. Even before the pandemic, SoftBank Group Corp. founder Masayoshi Son faced criticism for pouring billions of dollars into unproven and unprofitable companies. OneWeb, backed by SoftBank Group, is considering bankruptcy, Bloomberg reported Thursday.Getaround and the broader car-sharing industry had been facing challenges even before the pandemic. The number of vehicles on car-sharing networks as of January, about 2.7 million, is dwarfed by the number of ride-hailing drivers, 64.6 million, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Getaround said in January it had dismissed some workers but that it would continue to operate in more than 300 cities and that its revenue was growing sixfold. Last month, a car-sharing network owned by European automakers Daimler AG and BMW AG, called Share Now, stopped operating in North America.This month, Getaround outlined measures it was taking in response to the Covid-19 outbreak, which included waiving cancellation fees and quarantining cars that had been in contact with the coronavirus. Turo Inc., Getaround’s main startup rival, announced similar policies. Both companies acknowledged they’d seen drops in demand.On Thursday, as officials around the U.S. ordered many businesses to close, Getaround said it would keep renting cars. “Our service remains essential to our communities by providing flexible and safe access to transportation, and we are working to ensure it continues to be available during this time,” a spokeswoman said in a statement.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • COVID-19 Has Hit the Auto Industry Hard, But Could Hit EVs Even Harder

    COVID-19 Has Hit the Auto Industry Hard, But Could Hit EVs Even Harder

    According to S&P Global, the coronavirus outbreak, which is wreaking havoc all over the globe and pretty much in any segment of the economy you can think of, has pushed the world's economy into a global recession.Initial figures suggest that the Chinese economy was hit far harder than estimated, but on a brighter note, there are signs that it is beginning to stabilize. They are quite shy for now, but something is better than nothing! Now, Europe and the United States are following a similar path. Increasing restrictions on person-to-person contacts have resulted in a collapsing demand that will push all activity sharply down before a recovery, hopefully, begins later in the year. The world's largest economy, the U.S. economy, is either in the process of entering a recession, or it has already entered one, as the pandemic has severely disrupted economic activity far more drastically than previously estimated.Earlier this week, the big three U.S. automakers closed their North American production plants. And as bad as things may seem for the automotive industry, they are even worse for electric vehicles. Stopped Production Both European and U.S. auto manufacturers have now halted production. The European market was already in a conundrum. It was also caught in the middle of the U.S.-China trade war due to the complexity of its supply chain. Then there was the Brexit uncertainty. And to top it off, weakened car demand in China due to an economic slowdown whose prospects still remain clouded.And now COVID-19 has forced Volkswagen (OTC: VWAGY), Daimler AG (OTC: DMLRY) which owns Mercedes-Benz, Bayerische Motoren Werke Aktiengesellschaft (OTC: BMWYY), Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (NYSE: FCAU), Renault SA (OTC: RNLSY) and even the Japanese giant Toyota Motor Corporation (NYSE: TM) to close down its European plants. The road ahead can only be downhill and experts even fear that this blow will result in a lost decade.Low Oil Prices As if COVID-19 hasn't already taken a toll on the production of EVs considering all the above companies have invested heavily in this segment in an effort to combat Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) and adhere to stricter EU legislation regarding zero-emissions, oil prices have never been lower. This will make things harder for EV manufacturers.Moreover, with the weakening economy and lost jobs, purchasing power will be severely damaged, a tough blow for EVs, as they're still considered a luxury option when compared to regular combustion vehicles. Shifting The CO2 Strategy? BMW and Mercedes have announced they will add a range of plug-in hybrids as part of their strategy to meet the stricter EU regulations this year. Moreover, LMC Automotive predicts that they will even outsell EVs. Does this mean that automakers are backing off from their big debuts in EVs and turning to more realistic, not to mention more affordable, plug-in hybrids with combustion engines? It does make sense in a way, as CEOs of the above companies were openly scared about the costs of electrification, which is why many of them opted for joint ventures. And even Honda's Motor Co's (NYSE: HMC) CEO expects hybrids to outperforms EVs.BMW is using flexible manufacturing to produce all three types on the same assembly line, so in a way it is more adaptable than everyone else who has EV-dedicated platforms to whatever lies ahead. This article is not a press release and is contributed by Ivana Popovic who is a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure. Ivana Popovic does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases - If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: Contributors - IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you're interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: Questions about this release can be sent to ivana@iamnewswire.comThe post, COVID-19 Has Hit the Auto Industry Hard- But EVs Even Harder appeared first on IAM Newswire.See more from Benzinga * What's Next For The Big 3 Automakers? * Netflix Vs COVID-19 – Does The Streaming Giant Have A Chance Of Winning? * Will Coronavirus Stop Car Production In The USA The Same Way It Did In Europe?(C) 2020 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

  • Thomson Reuters StreetEvents

    Edited Transcript of BMW.DE earnings conference call or presentation 19-Mar-20 9:00am GMT

    Q4 2019 Bayerische Motoren Werke AG Earnings Call

  • Coronavirus Wrecks Europe Auto Industry: Rough Road Ahead

    Coronavirus Wrecks Europe Auto Industry: Rough Road Ahead

    While European carmakers like Volkswagen and BMW are already warning a difficult year ahead, there are concerns about sustained economic impacts.

  • Carbon Collapse Signals European Industrial Energy Use Falls

    Carbon Collapse Signals European Industrial Energy Use Falls

    (Bloomberg) -- Plunging demand for carbon allowances signals that industrial use of energy is declining as companies shutter factories and reduce workshifts across the European Union.Stung by the coronavirus pandemic, European nations are increasingly locking down sections of their economy to keep people apart and slow the spread. That’s led to less need for pollution certificates as factories and businesses curtail emissions by shutting down.Permits dropped as much as 18% on Wednesday, their biggest intraday decline in 18 months. A clear sign of market slack appeared the day before when the European Energy Exchange AG canceled its auction for carbon allowances because bidding fell below the volume available for sale. It’s the first time a sale was canceled since June. A sale by the U.K. on Wednesday attracted fewer bids than average, but cleared after prices fell even more.“Some industrial consumers and power generators are probably selling carbon allowances because they can see they’ll need fewer permits as the coronavirus hits output,” said Nick Campbell, a director at industry consultant Inspired Energy Plc.Carbon’s two-fifth drop so far this month is much faster than natural gas at 6%. Still, it’s a slower pace than Brent crude oil, which has almost halved.The European transition to climate-neutrality by the middle of the century will require policies to help economies recover from the pandemic, including changes to the bloc’s carbon market, Poland’s climate ministry said Wednesday.Car makers including Volkswagen AG, BMW AG, Renault SA, Ford Motor Co., Daimler AG, Nissan Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. all have said they would scale back production in Europe.Germany, the EU’s biggest CO2 polluter, cut emissions by 6.3% last year, the largest drop since the financial crisis in 2009, the country said Monday.In Italy, the European country hardest hit by the virus so far, power demand in the early evening Tuesday was expected to be about a fifth lower than a year ago.An Italy-style lockdown could trim power EU demand by 15%, according to Elchin Mammadov, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. Several steel mills have closed in the country, according to Metal Bulletin.The carbon program’s options market is also signaling weak demand for allowances, with traders preferring downside protection in recent weeks as futures fell.In the global financial crisis more than a decade ago, some industrial companies were using their free carbon allowances as a form of finance. Not only do most manufacturers get free permits, they also receive them more than a year before they’re needed.They can sell the spot allowances for cash and buy futures, giving them additional no-risk cash flow. Carbon allowances fell 29% in 2008 and another fifth the following year.The dramatic slowdown of economic activity in Europe is dampening demand for allowances and commodity markets more generally are in “panic mode,” Barbara Lambrecht, analyst at Commerzbank AG, said early Tuesday.The carbon price collapse shows “weakening” need for the permits because of the health crisis, electricity supplier Energi Danmark A/S said Wednesday. “The downtrend is set to continue today.”(Adds industry comment in the fourth, carmakers in the eighth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Bloomberg

    Europe’s Door to Joint Debt Cracks Open as Germany Softens

    (Bloomberg) -- Angela Merkel signaled she may be open to joint European Union debt issuance to help offset the impact of the coronavirus, an apparent softening of entrenched German opposition that could transform the finances of the 27-nation bloc.The unexpected opening from the leader of Europe’s dominant economy came after the chancellor and her EU counterparts agreed by video conference to restrict most travel into the continent in an unprecedented move aimed at slowing down the spread of the virus and mitigating its effects.European governments continued to mobilize resources to try to shield companies, preserve jobs and reassure investors as citizens are ordered to accept draconian curbs on daily life. With central banks almost out of ammunition, leaders are scratching their heads for ways to finance the sudden burst of spending without reviving the market turbulence that threatened to tear their currency union apart less than a decade ago.“We made clear, and actually everybody mentioned this, that we have to factor in serious, very serious, consequences for our economy,” Merkel said late Tuesday at a news conference in Berlin.EU health, interior and transport ministers are due to hold more talks on Wednesday on how to best tackle the disease and limit its wider impact.Spain and the U.K. joined Germany and France is announcing billions to support businesses at risk of going bust. French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire even went so far as to say officials in Paris are prepared to consider nationalizing large companies if necessary. In the U.S., Donald Trump is considering an economic stimulus of as much as $1.2 trillion.“We must act like any wartime government and do whatever it takes to support our economy,” U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.The gravity of the situation is forcing policy makers to get creative, and quickly. The idea for joint EU debt issuance was raised by Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Tuesday’s video call, according to a person familiar with the matter. Merkel said she was happy for her finance chief, Olaf Scholz -- a pro-European Social Democrat -- to explore the proposal with other ministers.Joint EU debt remained a taboo for Germany even at the height of the financial crisis after 2008, so the fact that Merkel is prepared to engage in the discussion is a sign of how concerned leaders are at the recession they are facing and the havoc it may wreak on its weaker members.‘No Conclusions’“We expect the finance ministers to discuss further on this level,” Merkel said. “I’ll talk to Olaf Scholz so that the German side can take part in this. But there are no conclusions.”Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, another longstanding opponent of pooled liabilities, was more cautious on joint debt after Tuesday’s EU video conference. He said the EU has tools in place that could serve that function, and he hasn’t seen “a serious and real proposal for a coronavirus bond.”Conte reiterated that EU governments must do “whatever it takes” to deal with the crisis, adding that no country can hope to shield itself from its impact. Delaying a joint response, he added, would be lethal and irresponsible.Italy is at the epicenter of the virus outbreak in Europe. For many policy makers, the country was already the bloc’s riskiest member: it has a bigger debt load than any country but Greece, growth has been moribund since it joined the euro, and the size of its economy makes the prospect of a bailout daunting.Weak LinkFrance backed Italy’s request and wants the European Investment Bank to issue the bonds, possibly with guarantees by the European Stability Mechanism, the euro-area bailout fund, an official familiar with the matter said.Conte said that the EU must ensure that citizens receive the care they need and that their economic and social conditions are protected, according to the person familiar with the call. He said a European guarantee fund could be an alternative way to ensure the financing of relief measures.EU leaders also discussed ways the ESM could deploy its 410 billion-euro firepower. During that discussion, Merkel cautioned that it would be difficult to use money from the bailout fund without any conditions attached, while Rutte was even more skeptical, according to an EU official with knowledge of the exchange. Still, neither of them shot down the idea, the official said.More LockdownsIn other developments Tuesday, Belgium drastically tightened its restrictions on citizens, banning all unnecessary movements, keeping only food stores and pharmacies open for customers. Brussels, its capital, is home to the EU’s executive arm and NATO.The EU also closed its external borders for 30 days. The restrictions will be implemented by member countries over the coming hours. In theory, the ban does not apply to the U.K., but in practice any form of travel has become virtually impossible.The virus is not just rewiring people’s lives, but also forcing businesses to rethink how they operate.Europe’s biggest industrial manufacturers from Volkswagen AG to Airbus SE took unprecedented steps to idle plants across the region. Carmakers PSA Group, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Renault SA are also suspending production, and Mercedes-Benz maker Daimler AG said its halts would affect car, van and truck plants.BMW AG on Wednesday abandoned hopes for another record year in sales, predicting deliveries will be “significantly below” 2019 levels and profitability the weakest for years. The German carmaker skirted plant shutdowns and instead will rely on shorter shifts and flexible working to rein in output.(Updates with ministers’ talks in fifth paragraph, BMW in final paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • How Does Bayerische Motoren Werke's (ETR:BMW) P/E Compare To Its Industry, After The Share Price Drop?
    Simply Wall St.

    How Does Bayerische Motoren Werke's (ETR:BMW) P/E Compare To Its Industry, After The Share Price Drop?

    To the annoyance of some shareholders, Bayerische Motoren Werke (ETR:BMW) shares are down a considerable 32% in the...

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: General Motors, Toyota Motor, Navistar International, AutoZone and BMW AG

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: General Motors, Toyota Motor, Navistar International, AutoZone and BMW AG

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: General Motors, Toyota Motor, Navistar International, AutoZone and BMW AG

  • Auto Stock Roundup: GM EV Push, AZO & NAV Quarterly Results & More

    Auto Stock Roundup: GM EV Push, AZO & NAV Quarterly Results & More

    General Motors (GM) bets big on EVs with $20 billion investments through 2025. While AutoZone (AZO) delivers earnings beat, Navistar (NAV) delivers dismal quarterly results.

  • Should Automakers Take Note of General Motors' EV Plans?

    Should Automakers Take Note of General Motors' EV Plans?

    The EV momentum is expected to reach a new level in the coming years with various attractive, long-range and reasonable vehicles set for roll out.

  • Reuters

    INSIGHT-The coronavirus domino effect: S.Korean tech firms reel as Vietnam links curbed

    For one South Korean multinational company that makes smartphone components used by Apple Inc and LG Electronics Inc, the coronavirus epidemic is dealing blow after blow. First, the initial outbreak forced its China factory to shut down for almost three weeks and caused supplies from China for its Vietnam plant to begin to dry up. Then when the virus spread to South Korea, travel restrictions prevented its workers from keeping an expansion at the plant, located in the port city of Hai Phong, on track.

  • Here's a Sneak Peek into BMW's EV Offerings For 2020 & 2021

    Here's a Sneak Peek into BMW's EV Offerings For 2020 & 2021

    BMW AG (BAMXF) set to bring to market three new models over the next two years.

  • The BMW Concept i4 gets us closer to what's coming in 2021

    The BMW Concept i4 gets us closer to what's coming in 2021

    BMW unveiled Tuesday a concept version of its upcoming i4, an all-electric four-door Gran Coupe with an estimated EPA range of 270 miles and the ability to produce 530 horsepower, pushing it past its high-performance M3 combustion vehicle. The i4 concept vehicle, which was unveiled online because the Geneva International Motor Show was cancelled due to the coronavirus, is slated to enter production in 2021. BMW has been talking about and teasing what would follow its i3 electric vehicle for awhile now.

  • Bloomberg

    Europe Mounts Pitched Battle Against Tesla for Electric Car Lead

    (Bloomberg) -- European carmakers including BMW AG, Volkswagen AG and PSA Group put on a brave face Tuesday amid mounting risks from the coronavirus outbreak, launching an electric-car offensive aimed at blunting the strength of Tesla Inc.With the Geneva car show canceled due to the epidemic’s spread across the region, companies set up virtual displays and media calls with executives to recreate some of the buzz usually generated at the annual Swiss expo. The effort comes against a backdrop of sliding sales and disrupted supply chains as factories in China -- the epicenter of the virus and the world’s biggest car market -- are only gradually resuming output.Worldwide plug-in electric car sales fell 4% in January, with Tesla dominating the market, according to a report published this week by Bernstein analysts including Mark Newman. Elon Musk’s company sold 30,000 units during the first month of the year, followed by Renault SA and BMW with 10,000 cars each and PSA’s Peugeot with 7,000.Here’s a roundup from the “virtual” Geneva show:BMW’s i4 Electric SedanChief Executive Officer Oliver Zipse billed the model as having “the typical BMW genes that you wouldn’t see in any other car.” The i4 will slot in next to the SUV-sized iNEXT as the luxury auto giant’s two flagship electric offerings in 2021. Reminiscent of the company’s bread-and-butter 3 Series, its low-slung aerodynamic design helps maximize the car’s electric range and sports car-like styling. The battlefield extends beyond Europe to lucrative markets including the U.S., where German brands long dominated the entry-level sedan segment. Tesla’s Model 3 has overtaken rivals, apparently outselling the once category-defining BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class combined.Read more: BMW Bets on EV to Reclaim Mojo in Entry-Level Luxury SedansVolkswagen’s SUVVolkswagen unveiled the ID.4, a prototype for its first fully electric SUV to flank its ID.3 hatchback later this year. The latest model will be produced and sold in Europe, China and the U.S., whereas the ID.3 is mainly for European buyers. The ID.4 will help take output of battery-powered vehicles by the world’s biggest automaker to as many as 1.5 million by 2025, according to the company. That’s more than three times as many as Tesla sold worldwide last year. VW has a lot riding on its electric lineup, not least recouping through sales an unprecedented investment of 33 billion euros ($37 billion) across the group through 2024.PSA Talks BuyersThe head of Peugeot maker PSA, Carlos Tavares, said between 10% and 20% of consumers are opting for battery-powered versions of its electrified models, a proportion that still leaves a lot to be desired. Speaking during a conference call, the executive who is steering a planned tie up with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said the buyer profile remains an “environmentally engaged” subset of the market who is making a statement through their purchase. The looming battle for carmakers is to lower the costs of electric cars and make them affordable to as may people as possible, he said.To contact the reporters on this story: Tara Patel in Paris at;Oliver Sachgau in Munich at;Christoph Rauwald in Frankfurt at crauwald@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at, Tara Patel, Frank ConnellyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.