Multinationals: Financial Aggregates (403 companies)

Annual statistical survey of major international companies (November 2016)

This is the twenty-first edition of R&S's annual statistical survey of major multinationals. The survey has been compiled from information in the companies' annual reports. Country of origin is determined by the location of the parent company's headquarters. The figures given for each country thus cover all the businesses run by companies based in that country and also include the operations of subsidiaries outside their home countries. The survey aims to pinpoint trends affecting large enterprises and their finances, rather than analysing industries located in individual countries. The financial aggregates cover mostly the 2005-2015 period and have been computed in the relevant local currencies, with the European and world aggregates being compiled by translating the currencies concerned into EUR at year-end rates.

Section I illustrates key trends in sales, operating results, financial position and industry performance. Section II contains statistical tables giving aggregate sales, profit and loss accounts, financial statements, sources and applications of funds, and financial ratios, with breakdowns by both country and industry. Section III describes the principles and methods used to select the companies and to restate their figures.

The survey is available free of charge in electronic format (by download).


F.A.Q. - Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of MFA?

MFA is an annual compendium of aggregate figures of leading multinationals engaged in manufacturing, software and web, telecoms and utilities aimed at highlighting operational and financial trends. The figures are also broken down by country and by industry.

When was it first published?

It was first published in 1995, when it contained statistics covering the period 1989-1994.

Does it cover small- and medium-size businesses?

No, only the largest multinationals are covered.

Are details on individual firms available?

The only details about individual firms are given in tables at the end of the survey showing their sales, capital invested and number of employees.

How representative is the survey?

It is representative of the performance of all the major multinationals.

What criteria are used to select firms for inclusion?

Firms in the industrial sector must have an international organisation. Software and web firms, telecoms and utilities may also be based in other territories. The two basic criteria are a) size: their sales in the last year for which figures are recorded must have been at least three billion euros, and b) for industrial companies, sales must be at least 1% of the aggregate sales of all industrial companies in the country or geographical region to which they belong, while for software and web companies, telecoms and utilities, sales must be at least 1% of the sector aggregate. These two requirements ensure that the indicators and trends in each aggregate are representative of the multinational universe.

How are groups handled?

The survey is based solely on consolidated figures. The aggregates are broken down by country based on the parent company’s country of incorporation, and the figures accordingly cover the domestic and foreign business of each entity.

How many years are covered?

The statistics of the companies go back ten years, those for software and web companies start from 2009.

Has the survey been reviewed recently?

The latest edition was published on 8 November 2016. Reviews and comments appeared in the leading Italian daily newspapers the following day.

Do similar surveys exist outside Italy?

Aggregate balance sheet figures are published mainly by central banks covering individual countries. The most important are those compiled by the Banque de France and the Deutsche Bundesbank on French and German companies respectively. The EU Commission has a databank containing figures compiled in various countries, albeit based on differing criteria.


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