Clariant net profit halves to US$39.6 million in first quarter but investors optimistic

1st May 2008, Comments 0 comments

Specialty chemicals company Clariant AG on Wednesday reported a 52 percent drop in first-quarter net profit to SFR41 million, but shareholders appeared optimistic

MUTTENZ, Switzerland - Specialty chemicals company Clariant AG on Wednesday reported a 52 percent drop in first-quarter net profit to SFR41 million, but shareholders appeared optimistic.

The company earned SFR86 million in the same period last year.

First-quarter sales dropped slightly to SFR2.11 billion from SFR2.15 billion in 2007.

Clariant said its balance sheet was adversely affected by the rise in the Swiss franc compared to other currencies, in particular the US dollar.

Analysts at Zuercher Kantonalbank said they had expected a better bottom line but praised Clariant's operating income before one-off charges, which included restructuring costs.

Investors flocked to buy the stock, which has lost more than 40 percent of its value over the past twelve months.

Clariant shares traded 15.8 percent higher at SFR11.08 francs on the Zurich exchange.

[Copyright ap 2008]

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