Oil report

BASF says Q1 operating profit down 6% on petrochemicals

FRANKFURT, April 30 (Reuters) - Germany’s BASF said on Thursday first-quarter operating earnings fell 6% as demand for basic petrochemicals was dragged lower by the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

Adjusted earnings before interest and taxes slipped to 1.6 billion euros ($1.74 billion), beating average analysts’ projections of 1.47 billion, according to a consensus posted on the group’s website.

Late on Wednesday, the company withdrew its outlook for 2020, saying it was impossible to estimate the duration and severity of the coronavirus pandemic. But management stood by an earlier proposal to pay a dividend of 3.30 euros per share for 2019.

$1 = 0.9211 euros Reporting by Ludwig Burger; editing by Thomas Seythal