July 25, 2018 / 5:59 AM / 8 months ago

Linde's first half operating profit up on gases in Europe, engineering

FILE PHOTO: Linde Group logo is seen at a company building in Munich-Pullach, Germany August 16, 2016. REUTERS/Michaela Rehle/File Photo

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Linde (LING.DE), which is preparing to merge with U.S. peer Praxair PX.N, saw operating income rise 3.5 percent in the first half, buoyed by a strong European industrial gases business and growth at its plant engineering unit.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose to 2.21 billion euros (£1.96 billion), Munich-based Linde said on Wednesday.

The company reiterated its full-year guidance for operating profit growth of up to 5 percent, when adjusted for foreign exchange effects, and a return on capital employed of about 10 percent.

Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Victoria Bryan

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