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Frankfurt (Dow Jones) – Industrial group ABB surprisingly presented first-quarter numbers, as they were better than they were in the market and the company itself also forecast them. The Swiss announced that in the last weeks of March in particular, business had rebounded significantly. First-quarter demand was likely supported by a buildup of inventories on the part of customers, which is related to bottlenecks in purchasing components and rising raw material prices in the industry. The group raised its annual forecast.
ABB reported incoming orders for the quarter at $ 7.750 billion, a 6 percent increase over the same period last year. Sales increased 11% to $ 6.900 billion. ABB reported its EBITA operating margin at 13.5 percent, which is significantly higher than the 10.2 percent in the previous year.
Thanks to the positive development, ABB has raised its sales forecast for the full year of 2021 and now expects similar sales growth of at least 5 percent. So far, ABB has reported sales growth largely within its long-term target corridor, which envisages an average annual increase of 3 to 5 percent over the course of the business cycle. Additionally, the company expects its operations industry business to recover in the second half of 2021.
ABB will publish the full first-quarter results on April 27, 2021. Until then, the company will not provide any additional information about these quarterly results.
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April 15, 2021 01:39 ET (05:39 GMT)