November 30, 2015 / 9:06 PM / 4 years ago

Linde cuts 2017 profit forecast on weak industrial gases

* Expects 2017 adj EBITDA of 4.2-4.5 bln euros

* Previously saw 4.5 to 4.7 billion euros

* Also won’t reach 2017 ROCE target of 11-12 pct, expects 9-10 pct

* Cites weaker industrial production

* Low oil price weighing on engineering unit

FRANKFURT, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Linde, the world’s biggest industrial gases company by sales, cut its 2017 profit target, citing slower industrial production growth weighing on its industrial gases unit.

Linde now expects adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) to come in between 4.2 billion euros ($4.4 billion) and 4.5 billion in 2017, down from an initial target of 4.5 to 4.7 billion, it said on Monday.

It would also not achieve its 2017 target for return on capital employed (ROCE) of between 11 and 12 percent and now expects 9 to 10 percent.

Linde also said its engineering division would continue to suffer from a weak order book due to the low oil price.

It said last month that only strong growth at its U.S. healthcare gases business helped it eke out a gain in third-quarter adjusted EBITDA.

At the engineering division, which designs and erects large plants for the oil and petrochemical industry, clients have kept holding off on large investments, with crude oil prices down about 40 percent from a year ago. ($1 = 0.9463 euros) (Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by David Holmes)

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