May 14, 2020 / 5:23 AM / 18 days ago

Merck KGaA says profit could slip in 2020

FRANKFURT, May 14 (Reuters) - German healthcare and chemicals company Merck KGaA flagged that a slight decline in operating earnings was on the cards this year as the coronavirus pandemic could place a significant burden on the global economy.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), adjusted for one-off items, would likely be in a range of 4.35 billion euros ($4.70 billion) to 4.85 billion euros, compared with 4.39 billion last year, it said on Thursday.

First-quarter adjusted EBITDA gained 27% to 1.2 billion euros, surpassing an average analyst estimate of 1.1 billion euros in a Refinitiv poll. ($1 = 0.9252 euros) (Reporting by Ludwig Burger Editing by Michelle Martin)

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