Associate member Fitch Ratings revises European equipment rental outlook

Fitch Ratings has revised the outlooks on three European equipment rental companies to Stable from Negative as economies rebound

These companies experienced better-than-expected performance after the first wave of lockdowns in Q2 2020. Financial performance, particularly leverage, is expected to remain broadly stable in 2021 in light of improving equipment demand and limited impairment charges, particularly in construction and the public sector. Equipment rental companies' exposure to the construction industry remains significant and the closure of construction sites during the first lockdown in many European countries negatively affected fleet-utilisation rates and overall revenue generation in the first half of 2020. However, the decision in most countries to allow construction sites to remain open in subsequent lockdowns supported utilisation rates and deferral requests were fairly moderate across the three companies and reduced towards the end of the year.