Fri, Nov 04, 2011 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

TECHNOLOGY

Qualcomm sales to grow

US chipmaker Qualcomm Inc forecast double-digit sales growth this fiscal year as its quarterly results beat Wall Street estimates as a result of strong demand for its cellphone chips. The mobile chipmaker estimated full-year revenue of between US$18 billion and US$19 billion, an increase of 20 percent to 27 percent from a year ago, and 7 percent to 13 percent growth in earnings per share. In its fiscal fourth quarter, which ran until the end of September, Qualcomm posted net earnings of US$1.06 billion, or US$0.62 per share, compared with US$865 million, or US$53 per share, in the same period last year. Revenue rose 39 percent to US$4.12 billion.

CONSUMER GOODS

Unilever warns on profit

Unilever, the world’s -second-biggest consumer-goods company, said profitability could fall this year amid higher prices for raw materials. In addition, the firm’s underlying operating margin could be unchanged or fall “slightly” this year, Unilever said yesterday in a statement, after reporting third-quarter underlying sales growth of 7.8 percent, topping analysts’ expectations of 6.2 percent growth.

BANKING

BNP profits fall 72%

French bank BNP Paribas said its profit plummeted 72 percent in the third quarter after accounting for expected losses on its Greek bonds in line with a new European agreement that seeks to reduce Greece’s burden and stop the debt crisis. The bank said yesterday that its net profit was 541 million euros (US$747 million), down from 1.9 billion euros in the same period last year. That figure includes a provision for a 60 percent “haircut” on all the Greek bonds BNP holds. Revenues slumped 7.6 percent to 10 billion euros.

FINANCE

ING NV to cut 2,000 jobs

ING NV, the bank and insurer, said it would cut 2,000 jobs in response to Europe’s deepening financial crisis, despite remaining profitable in the third quarter. Net profit was 1.69 billion euros (US$2.32 billion), down from 239 million euros in the same period a year ago. Chief executive Jan Hommen said the company’s banking profits declined as interest margins narrowed, but the company was trying to remain ahead of developments by reducing costs. Insurance profits rose.

STEEL

ArcelorMittal Q3 profits fall

ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steel maker, yesterday posted a 50 percent drop in third-quarter net profit, compared with the same period a year earlier. The company blamed weakening economic conditions and increasing uncertainty in the market and said the outlook for the rest of the year was difficult. Net profit dropped to US$700 million in the third quarter, from US$1.4 billion a year earlier, but sales increased 22.6 percent to US$24.2 billion from US$19.7 billion.

AUTOMAKERS

BMW records strong sales

BMW, a leading maker of top-of-the-range cars, said yesterday that strong sales enabled it to lift profits in the third quarter of this year. The company said in a statement that its bottom-line net profit rose by 23.8 percent to 1.082 billion euros (US$1.5 billion) on a 3.8 percent increase in sales to 16.547 billion euros. In terms of vehicles sold, the firm said its unit sales increased by 9 percent to 399,218 in the period from July to September. Sales of the BMW brand were up 8.2 percent, Mini sales grew by 13.4 percent and Rolls-Royce sales were up by 12 percent.

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