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Sweden Investor group posts sharp profit drop

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File photo: Simon Cunningham/Flickr
08:12 CEST+02:00
Swedish investment giant Investor on Wednesday said its first-quarter profits slumped by a quarter, underlining Sweden's vulnerability to international instability.
 
From January to March 2014 the group - one of the largest investors in Nordic-based multinationals including Saab, Atlas Copco and Ericsson --
reported a 25 percent drop in profits from a year earlier to 12.14 billion kronor ($1.85 billion).
   
However the group's net asset value, at 227,584 billion kronor grew by 5.6 percent compared to the previous quarter.
   
Founded over a century ago by the Wallenberg family, the Investor group is often seen as a barometer for the economic health of Sweden, given the large number of indigenous companies which are partly owned by the group.
   
Among its main investments are engineering company Atlas Copco (16.8 percent share), SEB bank (20.8 percent), the Swiss-Swedish engineering and
robotics firm ABB (8.1 percent) and the white goods group Electrolux (15.5 percent).
   

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Group president Börje Ekholm said in a statement that current geopolitical uncertainty "will increase the uncertainty for our export companies".
   
The groups shares were down 0.7 percent in late afternoon trading on the Stockholm Stock Exchange in an overall market down 1.2 percent.

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