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June 24 (Reuters) - Specialty chemicals maker Elementis Plc said it expected its full-year earnings per share to miss market expectations, hurt by the significant reduction in oil projects in North America.
Shares in the company fell 15 percent in early trade on the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday morning.
The steep slide in crude oil prices over the last year forced drillers in the United States to idle more than half of their oil rigs in the past six months, bringing the total rig count down to 631, the lowest since August 2010.
Elementis said it expected sales of additives to the oilfield drilling market for the first half and the year to be at least 30 percent lower than a year earlier.
The company said while trading in the first half was in line with its expectations, demand in China for its coatings additives weakened in the second quarter and currency fluctuations hurt sales at its Latin American personal care business.
Elementis supplies additives and coatings to a range of sectors from personal care to industrial and architectural.
The company's shares were down 13.5 percent at 269.6 pence at 0720 GMT and were the biggest losers on the FTSE-250 midcap index. (Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)