Advertisement

Volumes at Johnson Matthey hit by Amplats shake-up

Speciality chemicals group Johnson Matthey reported that both sales and profits fell in the third quarter, while the outlook for the rest of the year remains mixed.

Speciality chemicals group Johnson Matthey reported that both sales and profits fell in the third quarter, while the outlook for the rest of the year remains mixed.

"In a difficult market environment during the quarter, trading across the group was challenging," the firm said in a statement covering the three months to December 31st.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Sales excluding precious metals (sales) were down 2.0% at £635m during the period. Meanwhile underlying profit before tax slumped 19% to £84.3m, mainly due to a change in the sales mix and lower volumes in Precious Metals.

Johnson Matthey, the world leader in platinum distribution and the sole marketing agent for Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), said that the fall in volumes was partly attributable to Amplats's current restructuring programme announced earlier this month, in which is said that it would close several mines in South Africa.

The chemicals group said that while platinum prices have risen as a result of the shake-up at Amplats, the planned reduction in mining volumes will "impact" its business.

"The results for this division in the second half of the year are therefore expected to be slightly ahead of the first half but substantially lower than the second half of last year."

Mixed outlookThe outlook for the Environmental Technologies division is "stable", with the company expecting to perform better in the second half than the first. Weak trading in Europe and Japan will continue but should be offset by "promising prospects" in the US.

Meanwhile, the underlying performance of the Fine Chemicals division is expected to slip in the second half.

"The group's steady underlying performance is expected to continue for the rest of the financial year and, in line with the guidance in our half year report, we continue to anticipate that the group's performance in the second half will be similar to that for the first six months of the year," the company said.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended

Broker safety – your questions answered
Investment strategy

Broker safety – your questions answered

Cris Sholto Heaton answers more of your questions about the safety of stockbroker accounts
25 Mar 2020
How demographics affects stock valuations
Investment strategy

How demographics affects stock valuations

New research suggests that stock and bond valuations are driven by the age of the population – at least in the US.
24 Feb 2020
Do you own shares in Sirius Minerals? Here’s what you need to do now
Stocks and shares

Do you own shares in Sirius Minerals? Here’s what you need to do now

Mining giant Anglo American has proposed a cash takeover of Yorkshire-based minnow Sirius Minerals. Unhappy shareholders must decide whether to accept…
20 Feb 2020
Why investors should be “cautiously bullish” for 2020
Stockmarkets

Why investors should be “cautiously bullish” for 2020

Analysts have been out in force making rosy predictions for stockmarkets in 2020, but while there is certainly a case for optimism, investors should r…
17 Jan 2020

Most Popular

What gold, bonds and tech stocks have in common
Stockmarkets

What gold, bonds and tech stocks have in common

"Risk off" or "safe haven" assets such as gold and government bonds have been doing well lately. But so have riskier tech stocks. That seems to defy c…
10 Jul 2020
An economics lesson from my barber
Inflation

An economics lesson from my barber

On reopening his shop after lockdown, Dominic Frisby’s barber doubled his prices. It’s all part of the post-Covid inflation process – and we’re going …
8 Jul 2020
Share tips of the week
Share tips

Share tips of the week

MoneyWeek’s comprehensive guide to the best of this week’s share tips from the rest of the UK's financial pages.
10 Jul 2020