BASF: Sales Volumes Down, Trade Conflicts ‘Serious Concern’

BASF reported a 20% jump in overall sales in the second quarter to $1.8 billion for its Agricultural Solutions business, boosted by acquisitions from Bayer. However, sales volumes fell 12% due to prolonged rains in North America.

H1 2019 sales by indication and sector. Source: BASF

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In addition, it benefited from a slightly higher price level in the legacy business and positive currency effects.

The macroeconomic environment became challenging for BASF as a whole in the second quarter of 2019. “There is currently high uncertainty, low visibility and poor predictability,” said Dr. Martin Brudermüller, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE, during a conference call.

The global trade conflicts, particularly between the United States and China, are a serious concern for the company. “We followed the general assessment that a solution would be found by the middle of the year. But now it seems the situation will not ease for some time,” said Brudermüller.

“The global economic risks have increased significantly during recent months,” said Brudermüller. “This has been driven by geopolitical developments and the ongoing trade conflicts between the United States and its trading partners. These conflicts will not be resolved in the near future and are causing a noticeable slowdown in macroeconomic growth around the world, particularly in China.”