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Legal and economic factors

Overall, the legal and economic factors for the Fresenius Group were largely unchanged, meaning the Group’s operating business was not materially affected.

The life-saving and life-sustaining products and therapies that the Group offers are of intrinsic importance for people worldwide. Therefore, our markets are fundamentally stable and relatively independent of economic cycles. For detailed information on our markets, please see here.

Furthermore, the diversification across four business segments and our global reach provide additional stability for the Group.

The statement of income and the balance sheet can be influenced by currency translation effects as a result of exchange rate fluctuations, especially in the rate between the U.S. dollar and the euro. In 2013, this had a negative effect on the statement of income due to the altered average annual exchange rate between the U.S. dollar and the euro of 1.28 in 2012 as compared to 1.33 in 2013. The changed spot rate of 1.32 as of December 31, 2012 – compared to 1.38 as of December 31, 2013 – had a significant effect on the balance sheet.

There were no legal aspects that significantly affected business performance in 2013.