Thursday, February 20, 2020
Yum Brands and Coronovirus Damage

Wednesday, February 12, 2020
Another Calcbench Use Case: Benchmarking DPO Changes

Tuesday, February 11, 2020
Updated Calcbench Excel Add-In

Monday, February 10, 2020
Hot Take on Cooling PPE Outlays

Monday, February 3, 2020
A Brief History of Juul Impairment Charges

Thursday, January 30, 2020
Research Note: Impairment of Leased Assets

Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Tracking Coronavirus Risk, Disclosures

Thursday, January 23, 2020
How to Find a Material Weakness

Sunday, January 19, 2020
Calcbench Tip: Email Alerts

Sunday, January 19, 2020
Calcbench Tip: Text Disclosures

Tuesday, January 14, 2020
Devising an Impairment Sensitivity Test

Thursday, January 9, 2020
Acuity Impairment on Leased Asset

Thursday, January 9, 2020
Calcbench Excel Add-in for Office 365 (The Excel Add-in on Mac)

Tuesday, January 7, 2020
Restructuring After Restructuring at Jabil

Friday, January 3, 2020
New Year, New Risks for Uber & Others

Friday, December 27, 2019
Looking Again at Legalized Weed

Sunday, December 22, 2019
An Update on Trucking Industry Slowness

Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Coming Up in 2020: CECL Disclosures

Wednesday, December 11, 2019
Finding and Assessing ‘Contribution Margin’

Monday, December 9, 2019
Cycling Through Peloton’s Financials

Archive  |  Search:
Hot Take on Cooling PPE Outlays
Monday, February 10, 2020

Calcbench now has enough 2019 data from the S&P 500 to start preliminary trend analysis on, well, all sorts of things. So our first pass is a quick take on spending for property, plant, and equipment.

To keep things simple, we pulled the numbers on 76 firms in the S&P 500 that reported “payments to acquire PPE” for 2019 and the prior three years. Then we compared that spending as a percentage of total revenue.

Bottom line: that spending did decline mildly last year compared to 2018, but is still a fair bit above spending in 2016 and 2017. See Figure 1, below.

What can we extrapolate from these findings? To be fair, not much. We cannot say capex spending is in decline; firms report capex in several ways, and this sample only looks at 76 companies. That’s a tiny sliver of the whole.

But by this precise definition, among firms that collectively had $2.45 trillion in revenue last year, which is nothing to sneeze about — yes, outlays for PPE declined last year for the first time in at least four years.

We also examined PPE spending as a percentage of total revenue. Again, that number slid downward last year after three years of small but steady increases. See Table 1, below.

And lastly, while the average percentage spend arrived at 6.64 percent, some firms devoted quite a bit more of their revenue to acquiring PPE. Table 2 shows the top 5.

In the fullness of time Calcbench will take a much deeper dive into capex spending across all industries, as we do just about every year. For now, you can conduct your own research by visiting our Multi-Company search page, selecting a group of firms to research, and then using our standardized metrics or XBRL tag search fields to find the precise data point you want to study.

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