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Clariant shares plunge on earnings fears

Fears of recession are hitting Clariant Keystone Archive

The specialty chemicals firm, Clariant, has seen its stock price plunge by nearly a fifth during Thursday's trading session on concerns about its earnings and its debt level. Its shares closed down 15 per cent to SFr20.70.

Analysts blamed the share price fall on the economic slowdown and on increasing fears that a rise in oil prices after last week’s attacks could hit the company. Analysts are worried that the Basel-based company has little chance of reducing its debt of around SFr5 billion.

Clariant forecast in August that its second half results would not match those for the first half of the year.

“The oil price rose sharply last week after the events in New York and Washington, but we still assume the trend for raw materials is tending to decline,” said company spokesman, Phillip Hamel.

“Even if the oil price rose in the short term, our raw materials bill should decline slightly,” he added.

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR