(Adds details about key figures, CEO quote, market indications)
April 25 (Reuters) - Swiss freight-forwarding group Kuehne & Nagel International reported a 2.5 percent increase in its first-quarter core earnings on Thursday, including improved operating results at its sea freight and overland divisions.
The company's earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) rose to 242 million Swiss francs ($237 million) from 236 million francs a year earlier, it said in a statement.
The figure included a 3 million franc boost from implementing IFRS 16-Leases accounting rules, which require the group to recognise most lease contracts on its balance sheet.
For sea freight, the largest part of the business, the logistic company reported a 15 percent increase in EBIT. At 112 million francs, that was ahead of analysts' consensus forecast of 101 million francs, Credit Suisse said.
The group also posted net turnover growth in both its overland and contract logistics divisions, in line with its intention to reduce its reliance on its core business.
“We find ourselves in an environment in which global economic growth is noticeably slowing” CEO Detlef Trefzger said in a statement, adding the group was still planning a further increase in its results for this year.
Shares in the group were seen up around 1 percent in Julius Baer’s premarket indications.
$1 = 1.0209 Swiss francs Reporting by Linda Pasquini in Gdynia; Editing by Rashmi Aich and Mark Potter