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Bayer Profit Up 2 Percent

November 11, 1998

LEVERKUSEN, Germany (AP) _ German chemicals giant Bayer AG said Wednesday it expects sales in 1998 to be flat but earnings still to be higher than in 1997.

Bayer reported nine-month figures Wednesday that showed a net profit rise of 2 percent over the same period last year.

``The world economy has lost much of its momentum and this has affected us too,″ company chairman Manfred Schneider said.

Bayer said sales in the first nine months were 41.4 billion marks, or $25.8 billion, slightly up from 41.3 billion marks in the same period in 1997.

Net profit rose 2 percent to 2.42 billion marks while pretax profit rose 4 percent to 4.1 billion marks. Operating profit rose 5 percent to 4.4 billion marks from 4.2 billion marks.

Continuing effects of the economic crisis in Asia and price pressures will mean full-year 1998 sales ``will be at the 1997 level,″ Schneider said. ``As far as pretax income is concerned, we believe we still stand a chance of exceeding last year’s record figure.″

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