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Sigma-Aldrich (Nasdaq: SIAL) Reports 18.5% Gain in Q3 2008 Diluted EPS and Reaffirms Full Year 2008 Diluted EPS Forecast. Q3 2008 Sales Increase 7.4%. Buyback Authorization Increased by 10 Million Shares.
Date:10/21/2008

by more moderate growth in

our SAFC business. Recent Research selling price increases are expected

to mitigate the impact of slowing pharmaceutical demand in both

Research and Fine Chemicals. Currency could add another 3% to 4% to

full year 2008 sales growth, but reduce otherwise reportable growth in

Q4 2008 by approximately 3%, if exchange rates remain at September 30,

2008 levels.

-- Improved Margins Expected: Currency, lower interest rates, our supply

chain initiative and other process improvements are expected to enhance

the pretax profit margin for full year 2008 from the 21.5% pretax

margin achieved in full year 2007.

-- EPS Guidance Reaffirmed: Management reaffirmed its full year 2008

diluted EPS expectation in the range of $2.62 to $2.72. Improved

margins and the recent reinstatement of the U.S. R&D tax credit

retroactive to January 1, 2008 should offset a lower expected Q4

currency benefit (based on September 30, 2008 currency rates) and the

anticipated impact from ongoing softness in pharmaceutical based sales.

-- Share Buyback Authorization Increased: An additional 10 million shares

were added to the prior authorization, indicating management's

confidence in its long-term growth potential and its ability to return

capital to shareholders.

CEO's STATEMENT:

Commenting on third quarter performance and future expectations, President and CEO Jai Nagarkatti said: "We are pleased with our performance as we continue to pursue and achieve above market growth. We're in the final quarter of our 2006-2008 strategic plan, with the initiatives that have been key to growth over that period still performing very well. And, we're now finalizing our plans to add new activities as we seek to drive growth above market rates for the next three years. Our organic growth has been at roughly
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SOURCE Sigma-Aldrich
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