Texas Companies With High Internationalization Levels Enjoy Higher Profit Margins

Texas companies with high levels of global sales and operations generally outperformed less internationally-focused Texas companies in the last six years, according to a new report by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. (HSBC).

Findings from the report, ‘HSBC Spotlight on US Trade: Texas,’ show that highly international Texas-based companies in the years 2007-2012 had five times higher average profit margins (five percent) than their low-international counterparts (one percent). This was even more dramatic than the national average which showed that highly internationalized companies outperformed low international companies nearly three to one. Companies in four sectors – consumer goods, healthcare, industrials, and information and communications technologies (ICT) – also followed the same trend.

The HSBC report analysed the level of overseas sales and operations at top US publicly listed companies based in Texas and across the nation to understand the impact of internationalization on business profit margins by region and select sectors.

When comparing profit margins just in terms of international sales, the difference between Texas companies with higher international sales and those with low international sales is even more striking. The findings show Texas companies with high international sales had an average profit margin of seven percent in the last six years, compared with less than one percent at Texas companies with low international sales.

“This report highlights what we see consistently with our clients, that there is a positive correlation between international trade and higher profit margins,” said Lori Vetters, Senior Vice President, Texas Area Director, Middle Market, for HSBC Commercial Banking in the US. “Clearly, many Texas companies have benefited from international commerce and are seizing global trade opportunities to thrive.”

Texas is the nation’s leading export state for the 11th year in a row with over $265 billion in merchandise exports in 2012, and more than one-quarter (28 percent) of all manufacturing jobs in the state are export-dependent, according to the US Commerce Department. However, the HSBC report shows that compared to other regions, Texas companies had the least internationally oriented operations. Only 31 percent had operations abroad and only 19 percent had employees abroad.

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