DuPont sees market stabilisation and early signs of recovery

20 October 2009 15:31  [Source: ICIS news]

DuPont sees early signs of recoveryLONDON (ICIS news)--DuPont is seeing market stabilisation and early signs of recovery, CEO Ellen Kullman said on Tuesday.

The company had seen sales volume improvements quarter to quarter in 2009, with year-on-year volumes down 12% in the latest quarter compared with a 19% fall in the second, and sequential improvements in its industrial businesses, she said in conference call.

The global market position remained erratic, however, she added.

Kullman described “a developing recovery that is shaped different by market and geography”.

The company was all but sold out of titanium dioxide, she said. It was also seeing re-stocking across important automobile supply chains.

However, late-cycle products such as the high-strength materials Nomex and Kevlar remained weak having faced more de-stocking than expected.

They did not turn down until late in the first quarter of 2009 or the start of the second quarter.

In the company’s performance materials segment, which includes engineering and industrial polymers and performance elastomers, the third quarter seemed to reflect true demand, Kullman added.

DuPont earlier reported an 11% improvement in third-quarter net profits against a 2008 third quarter hit by hurricane-related charges.

It revised its full-year earnings guidance to $1.95 to $2.05 excluding significant items. Third-quarter earnings were $0.45 a share.

The company continued to face challenging operating conditions, Kullman said in a statement. Third-quarter sales were down 18% at $6.0bn, with volumes 12% lower year on year.

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By: Nigel Davis
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