Arizonas Largest Businesses Have Recovered From Recession

Arizonas Largest Businesses Have Recovered From Recession

Consumers might be struggling, but Arizona's largest companies are faring well, with broad profitability and rising stock prices. Giant Freeport-McMoRan leads the way, but several upstarts are hot.

Many consumers are limping along. Governments are struggling with budget pressures. But corporate America, for the most part, has fully recovered from the Great Recession.

Arizona's biggest companies are faring relatively well, overall. Their stock prices are up, they're making money and paying taxes, they're offering more compensation for top executives and they're boosting payrolls, if gradually.

In short, things generally are clicking for the biggest companies headquartered in the state, according to The Republic's annual midyear check on shareholder-based companies. So, too, for many companies around the country.

"Corporate America is in pretty good shape," said Keith Wibel of Foothills Asset Management in Scottsdale. "Companies cut costs, including people, during the recession and have added them back ever so slowly. Plus, the costs to borrow have declined so much that companies have been able to issue debt at very low rates."

Progress has been uneven, but one way to track it is by examining the rising values of Arizona's public companies. Twenty-four corporations here are now worth $1 billion or more. That's one more than in 2013, when the statewide list also had US Airways and Cole Real Estate Investments.

US Airways, now merged with American Airlines, has since moved its headquarters to Fort Worth, Texas, and no longer shows up in the Arizona companies' report. Neither does Cole, which no longer trades as a public company after a merger into New York-based American Realty Capital Properties. Mergers and acquisitions over the years have pared the number of quality companies based in the state, which has been a recurring problem for Arizona.

Progress on profits

Most of Arizona's larger companies are operating in the black. Of the state's 36 biggest corporations, 31 are profitable. The 36 corporations collectively earned just under $7.4 billion over the past 12 months. That's a jump of more than $800 million compared with 2013, excluding American Airlines and Cole Real Estate from the count both years.

Each of the 36 companies has a stock-market worth of $200 million or more. Arizona counts more than 150 smaller shareholder-owned companies, all valued below $100 million and most considerably smaller, that are not included in this report.

In terms of stock-market performance, 31 of the 36 Arizona companies are up over the past year, some dramatically so. Nearly all have recovered from their lows of five or six years ago. This helps to explain why average pay for Arizona CEOs in the past year hit a record $1.7 million, according to a Republic report published in June.

Read more here.

Edna Montijo - Owner Headshot
Phone: 480-999-1156
Dated: August 18th 2014
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AZ Xceptional Realty
2450 S Gilbert Rd #206
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