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Alfa Laval: reports falling profits and low demand

( - Alfa Laval, one of Sweden's biggest industrial companies, on Thursday reported weaker quarterly sales and earnings, and warned of low demand.

The engineering group, which makes heat exchangers, said net profit fell to just one billion Swedish kronor in the third quarter, from almost 1.5 billion Swedish kronor a year ago.

Earnings before interest, tax, amortisation and other items (adjusted EBITA) were 1.7 billion kronor, versus 2.1 billion kronor a year ago, it said.

Alfa Laval said net sales decreased by 14% to 9.7 billion Swedish kronor over the quarter, while order bookings fell by 9% to 8.9 billion Swedish kronor.

In a statement, the company said demand remained on a "stable," but "low level" over the third quarter.

For the fourth quarter, Alfa Laval said it expects demand "to be somewhat higher than in the third quarter," but this forecast failed to reassure investors, with the Alfa Laval stock falling over 4% on Tursday morning in Stockholm.

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