Bilfinger Berger, Germany's second-largest construction company, said its net profit was cut by more than half last year as a result of exceptional items and the ongoing crisis in the sector. According to its statement, the company booked net profit of €50 million ($65 million) in 2004, down from €126 million a year earlier. Nevertheless, the 2003 figure had been boosted by one-off factors, and earnings this year were hit by €50 million in provisions set aside to cover losses connected with accident-related problems at the Maumee River Crossing bridge in Ohio in the United States, Bilfinger Berger said. Excluding exceptional items, bottom-line earnings were more or less stable year-on-year, the company said. Nevertheless, underlying profit, as measured by earnings before interest, tax and amortization (EBITA), declined to €80 million from €101 million a year earlier.