BASF 1Q profit hits $1.4B, nearly triples

German chemical company BASF SE said Thursday that the economic recovery and a push by customers to restock their own inventories helped it nearly triple its first-quarter net profit.

The company, based in Ludwigshafen and whose interests include plastics, chemicals, oil and gas and agriculture, announced a net profit of euro1.03 billion ($1.4 billion) for the January-March period compared with euro375 million a year earlier.