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Dow to cut costs to blunt pandemic blow, posts smaller-than-expected loss

[NEW YORK] American commodity chemical company Dow on Thursday laid out additional cost-cutting plans, including laying off about 6 per cent of its workforce, as the chemicals maker expects "gradual and uneven" recovery in demand and prices from the coronavirus-induced slump.

The company, which makes chemicals used in industries ranging from plastics, paints and building materials, also posted a smaller-than-expected second-quarter loss, excluding items, helped by a tight control on costs.

The pandemic has ravaged the global economy and put millions out of work dampening demand for big-ticket items such as appliances and vehicles, markets where Dow has significant exposure.

The chemical giant is now looking to cut another US$150 million of operating expenses during the year and will target over US$300 million in improvement to annual Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) by the end of next year by reducing jobs and selling assets.

At the end of December, the Midland, Michigan-based company employed about 36,500 employees as per a regulatory filing.

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On an adjusted basis, the company posted a loss of 26 cents per share in the three months ended June 30, compared with the 30 cents estimated by analysts.


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