Page last updated at 07:15 GMT, Friday, 28 August 2009 08:15 UK

Italy woes hit Carrefour results

Chinese shoppers
Carrefour has supermarkets in 30 countries, including China

Carrefour, the world's second-biggest retailer, has reported a loss for the first half of the year after writing down the value of assets in Italy.

The company lost 58.1m euros ($83.4m; £51.2m) in the six months to the end of June, compared with the profit of 747m euros it made a year earlier.

One-off charges were 511m euros, 400m of which were write-downs linked to hypermarket group Finiper in Italy.

Group sales were slightly down, falling 1.6% to 41.3bn euros.

"These numbers reflect a difficult economic environment," said finance chief Pierre Bouchut.

He also indicated that there was "no sign of either improvement or deterioration" in trading conditions in July and August.

Sales fell in Europe in the first half of 2009, but increased slightly in Asia and dramatically in Latin America.

The retailer said it was on track to meet its full-year targets.

The supermarket group employs about 490,000 people in more than 15,000 stores and 30 countries.

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