ERJ staff report (DS)
Paris -- Michelin said its sales fell on currency factors in the first nine months of 2008, and that the trading environment has significantly worsened since its last forecast. If the worsened situation continues, the company said it will not meet its previous profitability forecasts.
In a carefully-worded statement which avoided all mention of profitability, the company outlined the decline in demand in North America and Europe, and the positive market growth in other areas of the world.
The company compared demand in the third quarter with demand over the first nine months by region and by sector. These figures showed that demand in almost all European markets fell in the most recent quarter compared with the year-to date figures. The only sector to do better in the most recent period was replacement truck (radial only) sales. A similar picture emerged in a generally poor market in North America, where the only sector to do less badly in the most recent quarter was OE truck tyre sales, which nevertheless fell by almost 10 percent compared to a year previously. Markets in Asia were static or slightly down, while South America remained mostly unchanged and the Africa Middle East region also remained unchanged in the third quarter compared to the first nine months
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Press release from Michelin.