28 October 2008 05:05 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--US specialty chemicals and catalyst producer Albemarle reported a 5% on year fall in third quarter net profit to $56.18m (€44.9m) as strong sales were offset by hurricane-related losses and high raw material prices, the company said in a statement late on Monday.
Hurricanes Gustav and Ike shaved off about $11m from Albemarle’s earnings for the period while costs of raw materials jumped more than $50m from a year ago, the company said.
Sales for the period grew 13% to $660.46m, boosted by the record turnover in fine chemicals to $167.2m, representing a 24% increase from a year earlier.
Polymer additives’ sales also grew 12% to $261.7m, supported by strong brominated flame retardant volumes, Albemarle said. But weak consumer spending and continued softness in the automotive and construction sectors would weigh down on demand for this segment towards the end of this year and at the beginning of 2009, the company said.
"Our operating results for the quarter were solid despite the negative operating impact from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike and continued raw materials pressures," said Mark Rohr, president and chief executive officer of Albemarle.
"In spite of the tremendous uncertainty in financial markets, our long-term outlook remains favourable," Albemarle said in a statement.
"We are confident in our ability to weather the near-term macroeconomic issues and stand well positioned to execute our long-term growth objectives," it said.
($1 = €0.80)
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