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Nov 15, 2007 09:52 EEST
November 15 (SeeNews) - Romania's largest oil group Petrom, majority owned by Austria's OMV, on Thursday reported a 22% fall in its nine-month net profit to 1.55 billion lei ($661 million/450 million euro), in line with analyst forecasts.
A SeeNews poll of three Romanian brokerage houses has put Petrom's nine-month net profit between 1.38 billion lei and 1.66 billion lei, compared to a net profit of two billion lei a year earlier.
Petrom said in a statement its turnover fell by 10% to 8.67 billion lei in the nine months through September. This figure was also within the range of analyst forecasts which put the company's turnover over the same period between 8.45 billion lei and 8.88 billion lei.
"During the first nine months of this year, we have been facing an environment influenced by the strong appreciation of the national currency against the U.S. dollar and the euro and by significant variations of the crude price, which increased by approximately 20% during the specified period," Petrom CEO Mariana Gheorghe said in a statement.
"The company is still in the middle of a restructuring process and the characteristics of the environment we operate in had a negative influence on our results for the first nine months comparing to the same period of last year," Gheorghe said. "However, the results match the company's expectations for this year."
The CEO also said that the results for the third quarter are much better than the ones recorded in the second quarter, due to peak levels of the crude price.
Petrom's net profit rose to 661 million lei in the third quarter from 506 million lei in the second quarter and 569 million in the third quarter of 2006.
Petrom shares closed at 0.497 lei on the Bucharest Stock Exchange on Wednesday, down 0.2% from the previous close. Thursday's trading session has not begun yet.
(1 euro = 3.4473 Romanian lei)
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