Johnson Matthey jump 7% after beating estimates

Johnson Matthey reported a pre-tax profit of £389 million for the year to March, 9% lower than the previous year but still higher than analysts’ estimates.

This goes to show that traders factor in predicted profit levels and more often than not it is about surpassing estimates rather than increasing profit. The specialty chemicals company attributed the drop in profit to weaker commodity prices, in particular in platinum and palladium.

Johnson Matthey is the largest supplier of catalysts to control car emissions, and this division performed well as the sales of diesel catalysts for trucks increased. New European legislation that will come into effect next year will require cars to have improved catalysts, and this could provide a massive boost to sales, with China and India expected to introduce similar legislation.

Johnson Matthey said business improved towards the end of the financial year, but given the recession in the eurozone there is still uncertainty over what the sales outlook across Europe in the coming financial year.

Johnson Matthey plc (DFB) chart

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