Germany’s BASF has announced quarterly profits that were not as good as expected. It blaming lower profit margins in its chemicals business, and higher taxes, while oil and gas revenue rose.
Earnings before interest and tax – adjusted for one-off items – were up 18 percent to 1.79 billion euros.
The world’s largest chemicals company in terms of sales said it aims to increase sales and earnings in all its areas of operation this year thanks to recovering demand and improved efficiency.
Commerzbank analyst Lutz Grueten said results at the group’s performance products division, which includes paper and textile chemicals, were below expectations due to what could be delays in cost cutting efforts.
BASF also said it was unlikely to revive its share buyback programme – once a mainstay of its shareholder payout strategy – this year because the cash would be better used to develop new products and to upgrade its plants and equipment.