December 9, 2016 / 8:16 AM / 2 years ago

Electrolux sees slow European appliance market growth in 2017

STOCKHOLM, Dec 9 (Reuters) - Swedish home appliance maker Electrolux expects demand for its products to grow on both sides of the Atlantic next year, but at a slower rate than in 2016.

The maker of Electrolux, Frigidaire, AEG and other household appliance brands, forecast demand for appliances would grow 1 percent in 2017 in Europe and by 2-3 percent in North America.

“Market demand in Electrolux’s largest markets, Europe and North America, is expected to grow moderately,” it said in a statement.

Electrolux, a rival of Whirpool of the U.S and Asian firms such as LG Electronics and Haier Group , noted market demand had been positive in Europe this year, although there had recently been signs of softer demand in some markets, including Britain.

Shares in the company traded 2.7 percent higher by 0815 GMT.

At its third-quarter earnings report in late October, Electrolux stuck to a broad forecast for 2-4 percent growth in Europe this year, but said signs of weakness in markets such as Britain, which voted in June to leave the European Union, meant growth was likely to come in at the lower end of that range.

It also forecast market demand for appliances in North America to grow by 3-4 percent in 2016.

The Swedish firm said on Friday it expected market demand in Argentina and Brazil together, the majority of its business in Latin America, to decrease by approximately 5 percent in 2017.

Raw material costs were expected to increase by approximately 900 million crowns in 2017.

Electrolux said it expected improved cost efficiencies to give a boost of 1.6 billion crowns next year, excluding the impacts of raw materials and currency swings. (Reporting by Johannes Hellstrom; Editing by Keith Weir)

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