UPDATE 2-Carrefour lifts capital spend to cement turnaround

jueves 5 de marzo de 2015 04:23 GYT

* 2014 operating profit 2.387 bln eur vs poll avg 2.38 bln

* Eyes 2015 capex of 2.5-2.6 bln eur vs 2.4 bln in 2014

* Targets further free cash flow increase in 2015

* Shares rise 0.9 pct (Adds share reaction, analyst comment, details)

By Dominique Vidalon

PARIS, March 5 (Reuters) - Carrefour SA, the world's second-largest retailer, reported higher profits on Thursday as a revival of its European hypermarkets started to pay off and said it would lift capital spending further this year to cement that recovery.

The group also reiterated it would be ready to go ahead this year with a stock market flotation in Brazil, its second-largest market after France, if market conditions allow.

Carrefour, which ranks second globally to Wal-Mart Stores Inc, said 2014 operating profit rose 6.7 percent to 2.39 billion euros ($2.6 billion), in line with a Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S poll average of 2.38 billion.

The performance reflected improved profitability at its core French and European businesses and robust growth in Brazil. Asia remained weak, however, amid slowing consumption and a government crackdown on lavish spending in China.   Continuación...