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Chinese SOEs' profits down 8.6 pct in Jan.-April

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BEIJING, May 17 (Xinhua) -- The profits of Chinese state-owned enterprises (SOEs) fell 8.6 percent year on year to 669.01 billion yuan (106 billion U.S. dollars) in the first four months of 2012, according to new figures from the Ministry of Finance.

On a monthly basis, the SOEs' profits edged down 0.5 percent in April, the ministry said on Thursday in a statement on its website.

The tobacco, auto, commerce and trade and telecommunications industries saw big profit gains, while the transportation, chemicals, construction materials and nonferrous metals industries experienced steep declines.

The profits of centrally administered SOEs slid 6.2 percent from a year earlier to 474.08 billion yuan during the January-April period, while SOEs under local governments saw profits decrease 13.9 percent to 194.93 billion yuan.

In the first four months, Chinese SOEs saw revenues grow 12.4 percent year on year to 12.72 trillion yuan.

They turned in taxes of 1.24 trillion yuan during the period, up 16.9 percent from one year earlier.

The SOEs' net sales margin ratio came in at 3.8 percent in the first four months, down 1.1 percentage points from a year ago, while the rate of return on equity was 1.9 percent, down 0.5 percentage points year on year.

The report does not include SOEs in the financial sector.

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