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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 February 2008, 11:46 GMT
Ferrovial profits plunge in 2007
Airport picture
Ferrovial is considering options for refinancing its BAA debt
Ferrovial, the Spanish property group that bought British airport operator BAA in 2006, has reported a sharp fall in its annual profits.

Net profit for the whole of 2007 fell 48.5% to 733.7m euros ($1.09bn; 553m).

Ferrovial blamed the comparison with 2006, which was a year of big disposals, for the downturn.

In 2006 it benefited from having sold its real estate division, Bristol Airport and a stake in the toll-road operator Europistas.

Excluding exceptional items, Ferrovial said its core earnings grew by 31%.

Shares rise

The company said it was studying alternatives to a 10bn-euro restructuring of the debt it took on to buy BAA.

"The capital markets are very complicated," its finance director Nicolas Villen said.

"We are working on the refinancing, we think it's possible but we have to study alternatives."

Ferrovial shares have risen by as much at 8%, which some analysts are attributing to traders who have bet on the shares falling desperately having to cover their positions.

"There's a lot of short covering," one trader commented.

"If they fear the shares will go up, they need to buy."

Grupo Ferrovial, the Spanish building company that spent 10.3bn buying the British airport operator BAA, has reported its profits tripled in 2006.

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