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Wednesday, 21 February, 2001, 08:27 GMT
Peugeot reports 80% profits increase
206 model
The car company reports profits up 80%
French car maker Peugeot-Citroen has reported that its net profits for 2000 are up 80% at 1.3bn euros ($1.18bn; 819m).

The company also laid out a new series of profits targets for the next three years and announced a stock split.

It plans to introduce 25 new car models during 2001 to 2004. This compares with the nine new models that were launched during 1997 to 2000.

Operating profits rose 26.7% to 2.12bn euros last year, giving an operating margin of 4.8%.

Both sets of figures were roughly in line with analyst estimates.

Analysts were expecting the company to report an 82% increase in net profit and a 25% rise in operating profit.

New profit targets

The car maker plans to increase operating profit to 2.6bn euros in 2001 and achieve a margin of 4.8% in its auto division.

Operating margin for the closely watched auto division rose to 4.2% in 2000 from 3.5% in 1999.

The company, which has seen its shares surge to record levels over the past month, also proposed a six-for-one stock split.

The company's shares ended up 0.04% at 278.1 euros on Tuesday, not far below last month's record of 283 euros.

The shares have increased by about 40% since the middle of October.

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