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Chemical Week Magazine :: Business & Finance :: Europe/Mideast

Economic Slowdown Impacts Fourth-Quarter Results

8:04 AM MDT | March 16, 2012 | —Ian Young with Sotirios Frantzanas

Leading Europe-based companies announced weaker financial results for the fourth quarter of 2011. Sales and earnings growth was slower than in the first three quarters of the year due mainly to the stalling global economy, although emerging markets stayed strong. High raw material costs squeezed profitability, although some firms succeeded in raising prices. Linde reported a 4% increase in net profits in the fourth quarter compared with the corresponding period of 2010, to €318 million ($417 million) on sales up 3%, to €3.6 billion. Operating profits...

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