Electrolux chief hails consumer confidence, lower interest rates for profits

Electrolux CEO: We're in an extremely competitive industry
Electrolux CEO: We're in an extremely competitive industry

Lower interest rates and increased consumer demand helped Electrolux beat analyst forecasts and report better than expected first quarter earnings, CEO Jonas Samuelson told CNBC .

The Swedish multinational home appliance manufacturer was trading at the top of the pan-European Stoxx 600 early Friday after operating earnings rose to 1.54 billion Swedish crowns ($174 million) ahead of a mean forecast of 1.33 billion in a poll of analysts.

"The consumers are there in most of our key markets. We see more confidence: low interest rates are really supporting demand and will support the continued good demand we see for this year and the coming years," Samuelson said Friday.

Electrolux's strong performance was also buoyed by a series of small to medium acquisitions in the first quarter, including Anova, Grindmaster and Kwikot.

Samuelson said he expects to see "a lot more opportunities over those lines going forward," however adding that opportunities for major acquisitions were limited. This follows the collapse of the company's attempted purchase of GE's appliance unit in late 2015.

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