CORRECTED: CORRECTS: Bayer sticks to guidance as Q2 beats forecasts

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German chemicals and drugs giant Bayer stuck Thursday to its full-year targets after reporting a 40-percent jump in second-quarter profits that narrowly beat market forecasts.

"We are pleased with the way our business performed," chief executive Marijn Dekkers said in a statement. "We confirm the full-year sales and earnings forecast that we raised in April."

Leverkusen, Germany-based Bayer said net income in the April-June period rose 40.9 percent to 747 million euros ($1.1 billion), exceeding expectations of 736 million euros according to analysts surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires.

Sales inched up 0.8 percent to 9.3 billion euros, or by 5.4 percent when adjusted for currency and other effects, somewhat below analyst forecasts for 9.5 billion euros.

Operating profit before special items rose 5.8 percent to 2.0 billion euros.

Sales at Bayer's HealthCare division fell 2.3 percent to 4.2 billion euros but rose 3.1 percent at its CropScience unit to 1.9 billion euros and by 3.5 percent at MaterialScience to 2.8 billion euros.

For the whole of 2011, Bayer said it still expect sales of between 36-37 billion euros, operating profit before special items of more than 7.5 billion euros and a 15-percent rise in earnings per share.

Shares in Bayer fell 1.93 percent to 56.42 euros in Frankfurt, however, with one trader saying the results "lack a trigger" needed to attract buyers of the stock, Dow Jones Newswires reported.

The DAX index of German blue-chips was 0.92 percent lower overall.

© 2011 AFP

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