(Corrects to show that Vossloh's statement on Tuesday referred
to an unrelated legal dispute)
* German regulator imposes fresh fines on eight companies
* Additional fines total 98 million euros
* ThyssenKrupp, Voestalpine says existing provisions
* Vossloh cuts outlook, shares fall 9 percent
FRANKFURT, July 23 Germany's anti-trust
regulator is imposing an additional 98 million euros ($129
million) in fines on eight companies including steelmaker
ThyssenKrupp and Austria's Voestalpine in a
rail cartel case.
The companies fixed prices for train track rails, switches
and sleepers and agreed not to compete for customers between
2001 and 2011, the Federal Cartel Office said on Tuesday.
"The aim of the agreements was to divide up tenders or
projects among the members of the cartel, it said.
ThyssenKrupp and Voestalpine account for the bulk of the
fines, with 88 million and 6.4 million euros, respectively. Both
said money they had already set aside for the cartel
investigation would be enough to cover the additional fines.
The fines come on top of a combined 134.5 million euros the
regulator has already demanded from five companies -
ThyssenKrupp, two units of Voestalpine, Vossloh and
Moravia Steel - for price-fixing to the detriment of German
state-owned rail operator Deutsche Bahn.
One of the companies involved in the case, German rail
technology group Vossloh, slashed its 2013 forecast on Tuesday
due to provisions for an unrelated damages lawsuit, driving its
shares down 9.3 percent by 1124 GMT. ThyssenKrupp was up 0.9
percent and Voestalpine 0.5 percent.
Negotiations are continuing between ThyssenKrupp and
Deutsche Bahn, which in December filed a total of 550 million
euros in damages claims against track suppliers.
"ThyssenKrupp is continuing to conduct constructive talks
with Deutsche Bahn on this matter," ThyssenKrupp said on
Tuesday, saying the two sides were still analysing the details
of what damages were involved and who was responsible.
Once that has been completed ThyssenKrupp should be able to
make a formal response to Deutsche Bahn's claims later this
Voestalpine has already agreed a settlement with Deutsche
Bahn, for less than 100 million euros.
Vossloh said earlier on Tuesday it now expected its 2013
operating profit to come in well below the year-earlier figure
because it has to take additional provisions related to damages
claimed in a separate lawsuit.
(Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Additional reporting by Anneli
Palmen and Tom Kaeckenhoff; Editing by Patrick Graham)