August 7, 2008 / 11:48 AM / in 9 years

Norske Skog CEO sees H2 "somewhat better" than H1

OSLO Aug 7 (Reuters) - The head of Norwegian papermaker Norske Skog (NSG.OL) said on Thursday that he expected results in the second half to be “somewhat better” than in the first half if costs did not exceed expectations.

The remarks from Chief Executive Christian Rynning-Toennesen followed the company’s report of a steep year-on-year drop in second-quarter core earnings, roughly in line with analysts’ expectations. “With the known factors -- the price increases that we can record and the (foreseen) price decline in Australia, we are positive that H2 will be somewhat better than H1, though we could be negatively surprised on the costs,” he said.

Investor relations chief Jarle Langfjaeran added that such a forecast depends on making a like comparison for the company with and without the sold South Korean business.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) fell to 601 million crowns ($116 million) in the three months to the end of June from 1.13 billion in the same quarter last year, roughly in line with analysts’ average estimate.

For the main story on Norske Skog's second-quarter results, double-click on [ID:nL6600124] Reporting by John Acher

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