The Good, The Bad, The Ugly of Euro Earnings
European earnings were mixed Thursday, with telecoms reporting results in line or above forecasts, while energy companies and financials posted profit declines or figures below market expectations.
- France Telecom first-half net profit falls 18 percent as tax and financing costs increased.
- Spain's Telefonica said first-half revenues grew 2.1 percent year-on-year, driven by a rise in mobile clients.
- Telecom company BT Group reported first-quarter earnings slightly below forecasts and said its full-year guidance remained unchanged.
- UK mortgage lender HBOS reported a 51 percent drop in first-half profit as it took a $2.2 billion hit on debt securities impacted by the credit crunch. The bank also said it would consider selling assets if the right price is offered.
Insurer Prudential just beat forecasts with a 7 percent rise in first-half profit, helped by Asia.
- Italian oil and gas major Eni posted a 4.4 percent rise in second-quarter adjusted net profit, below analysts' forecasts.
- UK gas-owner Centrica said it been "absolutely necessary" to raise household gas prices as first-half operating profit fell nearly 20 percent.
- Unilever reported a 6.8 percent rise in second-quarter underlying sales from prices rises. The food and consumer goods group also warned of softening economies in the U.S. and Western Europe on the back of high commodity costs.
- French pharma Sanofi-Aventis posted lower profit and sales that fell short of expectations, but raised its 2008 earnings per share forecast.
- German chemical company BASF's second-quarter operating profit rose 19 percent, thanks to rising oil and gas prices and a strong demand for its agrochemical products.
- British American Tobacco posted a 16 percent rise in first-half earnings and added it was confident about the future.
- Miner Anglo American said first-half underlying profit rose 14 percent on higher output and prices, at the top end of estimates, and forecast a strong second half.