CRH downbeat on global markets
Published:  08 July, 2010

DUBLIN: International building materials group CRH issued a downbeat assessment of trading conditions.

In a statement ahead of its interim results for 2010 due in August 2010, CRH said there was "uncertainty regarding the pace of economic progress in Europe" and "some softening" in the pace of recovery in the US. The US accounts for roughly half of CRH's EBITDA.

"We continue to expect ongoing improvements in the cumulative rate of like-for-like sales decline through the second half, although the full year decline is now likely to be somewhat greater than previously anticipated," the company said in its statement.

CRH expects the cumulative rate of like-for-like sales decline to ease through 2010. "By end June, the year to date decline had reduced to approximately 10% compared with the 14% decline to end April reported in our AGM updating statement in early May. Against this backdrop CRH now expects that EBITDA for the seasonally less profitable first half of the year will show a decline of approximately 20% (H1 2009: 0.65bn )," it said.

Operating profit for the six months to June is expected to be approximately half of last year's outcome (H1 2009: 0.24bn ), a greater decline than at EBITDA level due to the fact that depreciation and amortisation charges are more equally balanced than EBITDA between the first and second halves.

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