Jean-Marc Pillu, CEO of the Coface Group, commented: « We begin 2015 with robust results: the Group’s growth and profitability are satisfactory and demonstrate the steadfastness with which the Group is implementing its strategy in a still mixed economic environment. The weaknesses seen in certain sectors across the world are affecting companies’ financial solidity and are an invitation to remain watchful. The Group continues to accompany its customers through sound risk management, securing both their own results and those of Coface.»
Following a 35% collapse when the crisis hit, car sales in the United States in 2014 were back at the levels they were at in 2007. The recent fall in oil prices (-48% in 2014) undoubtedly contributed to this. But the recovery of this sector so severely damaged in the crisis, is also being driven by two key factors.
Following the clear improvement in sectorial risk in North America at the end of 2014 (3 sectors reclassified “low risk”: Textiles and Clothing, Transport and Chemicals), Coface has responded to the fall in crude oil prices by downgrading the Energy sector to “medium risk”.