* CEO Kaeser bows out with earnings beat
* Company guidance described as cautious by analysts
* Sees chances in stimulus programs, but awaits details
* Siemens expects currency hit in 2021
ZURICH, Nov 12 (Reuters) - German engineering group Siemens
gave a cautious outlook on its recovery from the
COVID-19 pandemic, saying on Thursday it expects government and
company investments next year to lag the global rebound in
The trains to factory software-maker said it expected the
downturn to linger and structural changes such as the auto
sector's move away from diesel cars to weigh on demand.
Although it was optimistic about massive government
stimulus, like the $2 trillion package under discussion in the
United States, firm details are yet to materialize, Deputy Chief
Executive Roland Busch said.
Busch will become CEO next year when Joe Kaeser steps down
after seven years in charge. Busch has been in operational
charge at Siemens since October.
Siemens also said it expects moderate revenue and earnings
improvement in 2021, described as increases of around 3 to 5%.
The cautious outlook sent Siemens shares 2.6% lower in early
trading, despite Kaeser signing off with a beat on industrial
For the three months to end-September, Siemens posted
adjusted earnings before interest, tax and amortization (EBITA)
of 2.64 billion euros ($3.11 billion) in its industrial
business, beating analyst forecasts for 1.98 billion euros in a
Group revenue of 15.31 billion euros missed forecasts for
15.50 billion euros, although orders of 15.56 billion euros were
better than expected. Both figures were lower than a year
earlier as demand was hit by the coronavirus pandemic.
"Siemens reported mixed Q4 results taking into account
expectations that have risen following beats in the sector," JP
Morgan analyst Andreas Willi said.
"However, here the outlook is more cautious, calling for a
return to growth in the second half with only modest growth for
The company also expects fluctuations in foreign currencies
to reduce net profit by around 500 million euros next year.
Kaeser, who has spent 40 years at Siemens and remains CEO
until February 2021, has reshaped the company since taking
charge in 2013.
During his tenure, Siemens moved away from a sprawling light
bulb to gas turbine conglomerate to focus on smart buildings and
factory automation as well as its mobility division, which makes
trains and rail signaling.
In 2018, the executive floated medical equipment maker
Siemens Healthineers, and this year separated and
listed Siemens Energy. The two companies along with
the remaining 'industrial' Siemens were all placed for the
future, Kaeser said.
The 63-year-old was unusually reticent to discuss his
legacy, saying it was for others to judge if he was successful.
"One important metric here is total shareholder return,
which nearly reached 100 percent over this period, clearly
outperforming the DAX index," he told reporters.
"Could it have been better? Absolutely. But it also could
have been worse much worse," he added.
($1 = 0.8498 euro
(Editing by Michelle Adair and Jacqueline Wong)