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L'Oreal CEO says U.S. market is not improving

By Astrid Wendlandt and Pascale Denis

PARIS (Reuters) - French cosmetics giant L'Oreal on Wednesday said the US market for mass beauty consumer goods remained flat, dashing hopes of an improvement in the current quarter, but pointed to continued recovery in Europe, notably in southern countries.

Last April, the maker of Garnier shampoo and Essie nail polish had said it had seen for the first time a flat market in the United States, its biggest market.

"The US market has not really improved in recent months," L'Oreal Chief Executive Jean-Paul Agon told Reuters in an interview on the fringes of a consumer goods conference in Paris. "The flat trends we had seen before confirmed themselves."

Agon also said he expected the group's active cosmetics division, which produces dermatological products such as La Roche Posay, to remain L'Oreal's fastest growing division in the medium term.

(Writing by Astrid Wendlandt, editing by Leigh Thomas)

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