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Saudi Arabia's Sabic profit tops estimates on sales



Riyadh: Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) reported a 7 per cent increase in second-quarter profit, topping analysts' estimates, as sales at the world's biggest petrochemicals maker increased. The shares dropped.

Net income rose to 6.46 billion riyals ($1.72 billion) from 6.04 billion riyals a year earlier, the Riyadh-based company said in a statement. The average estimate of nine analysts was for a profit of 6.40 billion riyals, according to data.

Sabic, which in 2007 bought General Electric's plastics unit for $11.6 billion, said in April it plans to expand in China and the United States as it is more difficult for the company to grow in the kingdom due to a shortage of gas.

The company's affiliates, Saudi Arabian Fertilizer and Yanbu Petrochemical, posted quarterly profits that missed analysts estimates as cost of sales rose and product prices fell.

"The results are more or less in line with the expectations and there are no more surprises expected from the company so people are cashing out," Yazan Abdeen, a fund manager, said of the share decline. - Bloomberg News

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