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Voestalpine's full-year earnings drop amid global trade tensions

Voestalpine AG's net attributable profit for its fiscal 2018/19 plummeted to €408.5 million, from €775.2 million in the year-ago period, due to the global economic slowdown caused by the escalating U.S.-China trade war and Brexit.

The decline was also attributed to a new emissions test in the automotive sector, production losses from an overhaul of a large blast furnace at the Linz facility, provisions related to ongoing cartel proceedings, and difficulties on the startup of a new auto parts plant in Cartersville, Ga.

On June 5, the company proposed a dividend of €1.10 per share, a 21.4% yearly decrease from the €1.40 per share distributed during the best year in Voestalpine's history.

The Austria-based steel producer flagged the earnings drop in January, its second profit warning in three months.

The company's earnings suffered despite posting an all-time revenue high of €13.56 billion, a 5.1% increase from the year-ago period.

EBITDA fell 19.9% to €1.56 billion. Net debt rose to €3.13 billion as of March-end from €3.00 billion a year earlier.