Paper maker Stora Enso in $104 million Q3 profit

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HELSINKI (AP) — Nordic paper maker Stora Enso Oyj reported Tuesday a third-quarter net profit of €80 million ($104 million) but says it will slash 520 jobs to save €36 million annually.

The company had a net loss of €50 million in the same period last year, when it recorded a nonrecurring cost of €193 million. Revenue in July through September fell slightly to €2.69 billion from €2.74 million in the same period in 2011.

The company, based in Helsinki, said it expects sales to remain flat in the fourth quarter.

CEO Jouko Karvinen was upbeat about the quarter, saying the paper maker showed "stable performance in weak Europe, transforming the group to value-creating growth."

"Markets overall varied from weak in Europe in printing and reading and wood products, to a mixed picture in renewable packaging. We finished the quarter at the upper end of our earnings expectations," Karvinen said.

Stora's job cuts — mostly in Finland, Sweden and Poland — will be accompanied by mill closures in Sweden and Finland and efficiency improvements at several other plants, the company said. It will also "examine the possibility of selling" the Corbehem paper mill in France, but gave no details.

Stora Enso's share price closed up more 5 percent at €4.91 on the Helsinki Stock Exchange.

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