BASF shares plunge on profit warning

FRANKFURT AM MAIN (AFP) – Shares in German chemical giant BASF tumbled at the start of trading yesterday, after the group slashed its earnings forecast for the full year, blaming the impact of trade conflicts on the industry.

After plunging more than five per cent at the open, the stock was showing a loss of nearly six per cent at EUR58.87 (USD65.98) just before 10am, making it the second-worst performer on the DAX index of blue-chip companies.

In a statement late yesterday, BASF had warned that it expects to report a 71 per cent year-on-year slump in operating profit for the second quarter, to EUR500 million.

Over the full year, operating profit before special items could be as much as 30 per cent lower than the EUR7.6 billion booked in 2018.

The forecast cuts were “a consequence of the considerably weaker-than-expected business development in the second quarter of 2019 and the slowdown in global economic growth and industrial production, mainly due to the trade conflicts” between the United States (US), China and Europe, BASF said.