Oil slump slashes SABIC earnings

DUBAI: Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC), one of the world's largest petrochemicals groups, posts a 29% plunge in fourth-quarter net income, widely missing analysts' forecasts because of the tumble of global oil prices.

The Gulf’s largest listed company earned 4.36 billion riyals (US$1.16bil ) in the quarter to Dec 31 compared with 6.16 billion riyals in the year-earlier period, SABIC said in a bourse statement.

SABIC, which is 70% state-owned, attributed the fall in profits to lower average prices for the products which it sold, although this was partly offset by lower feedstock prices.

Global oil prices have more than halved since last June, dragging down petrochemical product prices.

The profit was well below the average forecast of seven analysts polled by Reuters, who had predicted a profit of 5.5 billion riyals. — Reuters

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