News Article

Consumer Companies Resist COVID-19 in Mexico

By Daniel González | Fri, 04/03/2020 - 14:02

The effects of COVID19 have rocked the Mexican Stock Exchange (BMV), where there has been a significant change in the Top 5 companies regarding value by market capitalization. Considering the current world pandemic declared by the World Health Organization (WHO), Walmart has become the company with the most value by capitalization of the Mexican institution at the end of 1Q20, surpassing América Móvil, which now occupies second place. According to information from BMV, Walmart has 2,572 sale-points in the country and grew by 3.06 percent during the first three months of the year, while América Móvil accumulated a decrease of 6.09 percent in market value. The rest of the Top 5 is occupied by FEMSA, which rose 0.8 percent; Elektra, which increased 7.92 percent and Grupo México which, as a result of the collapse of metal prices worldwide, lost 21 percent of its value.

BMV as well as other international stock markets have experienced turbulent rallies for the last month. This unstable situation has affected both consumer and technology companies on the market´s trading floors. This situation could continue after the Mexican government launched in late March a health emergency contingency plan that requires all economic activities to come to a stop, except for those considered essential until April 30. These essential activities include the distribution and manufacturing of food.

Walmart, known in Mexico as Walmex, has one of the most developed and strongest online distribution networks in the country. This puts the company in a great position for the coming weeks. The following weeks are crucial for Mexican public health authorities, as they try to offset the spread of the virus which is expected to rise. This stark reality could lead the government to take even more drastic measures and enforce severe public health measures to control the population, like it has happened in other countries. This is one of the reasons why Walmart has decided to hire 5,250 employees to meet the enormous demand in Mexico and Central America.

Among the measures established by Walmart is the decision to implement one-way aisles, which are already effective in the UK and Canada, to ensure a safe distance between shoppers. The company is considering extending this measure to the US and other countries.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
BMV, El Economista, BBC
Daniel González Daniel González Senior Writer