India's L&T profit misses as infrastructure growth eases

A sign of L&T is placed on a road divider in Mumbai
A sign of Larsen and Toubro (L&T) is placed on a road divider in Mumbai, India May 25, 2016. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade

BENGALURU, Jan 30 (Reuters) - India's Larsen & Toubro (LART.NS) reported a smaller-than-expected rise in quarterly profit on Monday, as moderate growth in order inflows hurt the infrastructure company.

L&T's consolidated net profit rose more than 24% to 25.53 billion Indian rupees ($313.25 million) in the third quarter ended Dec. 31 from a year earlier.

However, that missed analysts' average estimate of 26.50 billion rupees, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

The company reported a moderated 21% year-on-year rise in order inflows. They increased 23% in the second quarter.

Analysts often see L&T's results as an indication of capital expenditure in the economy because of the diverse nature and scale of projects the company undertakes.

L&T's biggest segment, infrastructure projects, saw a sharp moderation in order inflow growth, which stood at 28% on the back of a decline in international orders. In the previous quarter, the order inflow had more than doubled.

"Major parts of the global economy continue to tread in turbulent waters due to policy tightening, high inflation, worsening financial conditions and continued trade disruptions due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict," the company said.

The company's total consolidated order book stood at 3.87 trillion rupees as of Dec. 31, compared with 3.72 trillion rupees at end-September.

L&T's revenue from operations rose over 17% to 463.90 billion rupees from a year earlier.

The company's shares closed 2.17% lower ahead of its results. They have risen 1.3% so far this year, following a 10% increase in 2022.

($1 = 81.50 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Nishit Navin in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel

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