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Germany's Siemens warns on profit margin

BERLIN (AP) -- German-based industrial conglomerate Siemens AG is warning on its future profitability, saying that doesn't expect to achieve its targeted profit margin for next year because of economic weakness.

Siemens said Thursday that it no longer expects to hit a profit margin of at least 12 percent by the 2014 fiscal year, which starts in October. It said the change is "mainly due to lower market expectations."

The company last November launched a cost-cutting program and productivity push aimed at saving 6 billion euros ($7.9 billion) by 2014 and increasing competitiveness. Siemens said in Thursday's statement that "the measures for optimizing the portfolio and reducing costs are largely on track."

Siemens' shares were down sharply after the announcement, down 6.7 percent at 77.98 euros in afternoon trading in Frankfurt.