CRH's turnover recovered by 5.3% last year to €18,081m and the EBITDA was ahead by 2.5% to €1656m. There were 43 acquisitions made during the year, the largest being the VVM cement business in Belgium. The trading profit rose by 24.8% to €871m and after other charges, including a net interest charge 5.1% higher at €229m, the running pre-tax profit improved by 12.9% to €743m. The net attributable profit advanced by 36% to €597m. Net debt at the end of December was 0.3% higher at €3483m and the gearing level was marginally lower at 32.9% compared with 33.4%, as shareholder's funds increased by 1.7% to €10,583m. Capital expenditure rose by 11.8% to €576m and 10.5% more was spent on acquisitions at 567m. European turnover, which still includes the modest, but strongly rising, contribution from the Asian operations, increased by 10.2% to €9973m, while in the Americas the turnover eased by 0.2% to €8108m. In terms of EBITDA, the European contribution improved by 7.4% to €897m, while the American contribution was down by 2.7% at €759m.