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The closing of the year 2023 in the latest tax statistics published

The recently published tax statistics allow us to begin to have a complete vision of what the year 2023 was like. In the last month, December data for sales, employment and salaries of Large Companies and foreign trade have been released. , and the data for the fourth quarter of sales, employment and salaries of Large Companies and SMEs . The latter also close the year for the Business Margins Observatory . Likewise, the annual information in the Motor Vehicle Registration Tax Statistics has been completed. The information on the December collection remains to be known, which, as usual, will be published at the end of March.

The basic features that characterized the evolution of sales, employment and salaries in Large Companies and corporate SMEs , the fiscal indicators with the greatest coverage, were five: moderation in the pace of sales growth; the different behavior of exports (with a bad second half of the year) and domestic sales (which rebounded in recent months); the smallest increase in prices; the robust and stable growth of employment, although at rates lower than those of 2022, which reflected the comparison with a year 2021, which had not yet reached full normality in some activities; and the increase in average salaries above 5%, a delayed and incomplete consequence of the price increases of previous years. These five elements are summarized in the following graphics:

Sales graphs variation rates

The worsening of exports throughout the year can be analyzed in more detail by going to Foreign trade statistics . The graphs shown below draw the trajectory of exports of goods and the trade balance. You can see how, starting in April, exports entered negative territory. Since imports also fell since that date, the trade balance managed to remain relatively stable for much of the year, improving the results recorded in 2022.

Goods export graph

Cometcial balance graph

The moderation in the pace of sales growth in 2023, which has been cited as one of the year's distinctive features, may give rise to a more negative interpretation of the year's situation than should be expected if the evolution of purchases. The data that accompany the reports of Large Companies and corporate SMEs offer this information, which can also be found, for a somewhat smaller group of companies, in the Margins Observatory business . The following graph shows this relationship between sales and purchases and their difference, the added value indicator. As can be seen, the meager growth in sales was compatible with an increase in added value of more than 8%, thanks to the practical stabilization of purchases.

Sales, purchases and added value graph

Precisely this strong increase in added value made it possible for the gross operating profit to continue growing, despite the increases in salaries and job creation. According to the information collected by the Observatory, and projecting the profit and loss account to 2023 with the results of VAT and labor withholdings, the gross operating result of non-financial companies would have grown above 5% and The margin with respect to added value would be at the highest level since 2009 in the last two years. The following graph illustrates this evolution:

Exploitation graph and margin on added value

Finally, we must highlight the publication of the 2023 annual data of the Statistics on the registration tax on motor vehicles . The final data for the year, which was previously known in the form of a preview, indicates that the number of registrations grew by 12.9%, the highest figure since 2016, and that the average rate interrupted the rise that it had been showing since the minimum also from that year.

% variation graph of the number of registered cars

Medium type graph