Dienstag, 19. Mai 2009

HSH Nordbank doing "better than planned"

HSH Nordbank just published Q1 financials. Well, sort of. They actually published a shortish press release with some condensed financials. It's not really noteworthy, except for this particular bit:

The press release trumpets "HSH Nordbank Q1 better than plan", and goes on to say that the pre-tax loss of 188 m € is 60 m € better than initially planned by the bank.

Sounds good, right? Well, except that this "plan" which they massively outperformed has - to my knowledge - never been published. I searched all through their webpage, and couldn't find any old document which shows us their plan. So the public was never told what they were aiming for. They still don't disclose the plan now, i.e. we still have no idea what they are aiming for in Q2 and beyond. But they tell us that they are very happy about outperforming their plan: "Hey, what's a sizable loss, as long as it's better than what we secretly feared when we drew up our confidential plan, right?"

(Oh, and another detail, just to be finicky: While 188 m € is indeed the pre-tax loss, maybe it should be noted that the after-tax loss is 260 m €, because they had to book some additional tax liabilities. But of course the press release only mentions pre-tax, and you need to go all the way to the condensed p+l to realize that after-tax, the loss is actually much bigger than pre-tax.)

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