May 12, 2017 / 5:52 AM / 3 months ago

Richemont cautious after FY net profit miss, sales drop

ZURICH, May 12 (Reuters) - Cartier owner Richemont said it expects the trading environment to stay volatile after net profit slid more than the market expected but sales growth picked up towards the end of its fiscal year to March.

Luxury watchmakers have been grappling with dwindling demand in their biggest markets, Hong Kong and the United States, but sales improved of late thanks to easier comparisons and what appears to be a sustainable recovery in mainland China.

Sales fell 4 percent at constant exchange rates in the year to March, slightly more than expected in a Reuters poll of analysts, but with a clear improvement in the second half thanks to a recovery in the United States and strong growth in China.

The world's second-biggest luxury goods group proposed on Friday raising its dividend 6 percent. (Reporting by Silke Koltrowitz; Editing by Michael Shields)

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