The few strong export-oriented groups listed on the Greek stock market have not only sustained but in several cases also improved their profits in the third quarter of 2017, and are preparing to end their best year in terms of fundamentals since the outbreak of the crisis just under 10 years ago.
The 34 listed firms (accounting for 17.08 percent of all 199 enterprises on the Athens stock exchange) that had issued their nine-month figures up until yesterday had total net profits of 1.225 billion euros, compared with losses of 1.632 billion in the same period last year. When the four systemic banks are taken out, the net profits amount to 1.276 billion, against profits of 1.098 billion euros in 2016, i.e. an annual increase of 16.2 percent.
The main reasons behind the impressive rise in earnings are the increase in exports, providing firms with strong cash flows and reducing their dependence on the subdued Greek market, the high refining margins that kept Hellenic Petroleum and Motor Oil at the top of the earners chart for another quarter, and the new record in tourism arrivals in Greece, which has benefited tourism-related businesses as well as transport companies.