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Germany’s BASF warns on profits amid weak auto sector, trade

BERLIN — Shares in Germany-based chemicals maker BASF have dropped after the company issued a profit warning, citing factors that included declining global auto production, weakness in the North American agricultural sector and trade conflicts.

BASF shares dropped 5.1% to 59.38 euros ($66.62) in early Frankfurt trading Tuesday.

On Monday evening, the company said its preliminary second-quarter figures were significantly below both analyst estimates and its own expectations at the beginning of 2019. It said it now expects full-year earnings before interest and taxes to be up to 30% below last year’s, compared with its previous forecast of a slight increase.

BASF warning cited slower-than-anticipated overall growth in industrial production, including a decline in the auto industry. It said demand for crop protection products was down, in part because of trade disputes.

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