Germany’s Merck has reported a double-digit decline in underlying earnings last year after taking a hit from foreign exchange losses.
The Darmstadt-headquartered healthcare and life sciences group said on Thursday its full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation — the company’s preferred measure of performance — dropped 10.5 per cent to €3.8bn.
The company attributed the slump in underlying profits mostly to foreign exchange losses from “various growth markets”. It also noted price declines in its liquid crystals business, costs related to product launches in its pharmaceuticals business, as well as research and development spending.
Net sales were weaker, down 2.2 per cent to €14.8bn, but Stefan Oschmann, chairman, noted the performance from its life science and healthcare sectors.
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