European mobile in Q3 2014: A rare improvement

18 December 2014

The European mobile market had a rare quarter of solid improvement in Q3, with reported service revenue growth improving by over 2ppts to -4.7%, helped by a 1ppt improvement in regulated MTR cuts (which have now dropped to near zero) and a 1ppt improvement in underlying growth

The improvement appears largely driven by improved pricing trends, with the improvement in Italy particularly strong. However we feel that pricing is still in general in a fragile equilibrium, with the potential longer term structural improvements - consolidation and network focus - yet to be made

Consolidation has certainly progressed, but more in-market mobile deals need to be made, and while current levels of investment are encouraging, with accelerating data volume growth also encouraging, they will take some time to have an effect at the consumer level

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