3M cuts profit forecast after sales miss on slowing Asia demand

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The 3M logo is pictured on products at an Orchard Supply Hardware store in Pasadena© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The 3M logo is pictured on products at an Orchard Supply Hardware store in Pasadena

(Reuters) – 3M Co (N:) fell short of Wall Street estimates for quarterly sales and cut its full-year profit forecast on Thursday, hit by slowing demand in key markets such as China, sending its shares down more than 3%.

Slowing economic growth in the high-growth markets has hurt sales of the maker of Scotch tape and Post-it notes, prompting it to cut 2,000 jobs earlier in the year.

Sales in Asia-Pacific, 3M’s biggest market outside the United States, fell 5%, while Europe, Middle East and Africa reported declines of 4.1%. Sales in the United States rose just 0.8%.

China’s third-quarter economic growth slowed more than expected and to its weakest pace in almost three decades as the bruising U.S. trade war hit factory production.

Net income attributable to the company rose to $1.58 billion, or $2.75 per share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, from $1.54 billion, or $2.64 per share, a year earlier, helped by a gain from a divestiture.

Net sales fell to $7.99 billion from $8.15 billion, and missed the average analyst estimate of $8.16 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

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