Monsanto Profit Jump Not Enough To Lift Ag Stocks (MON, MOS, POT, AGU, CF)
Monsanto Company (MON), the maker of genetic seeds and herbicides, said its fiscal second-quarter profit climbed 15%, but investors don’t seem too impressed as the shares are down 5%, a performance that is weighing on the Agricultural Chemical and Fertilizer Stocks Index to the tune of a 1.3% loss.
For the fiscal second quarter, Monsanto earned $1.02 billion, or $1.88 a share, up from $887 million, or $1.60 a share, a year earlier as revenue rose 6.1% to $4.13 billion. Analysts were expecting a profit of $1.84 a share on revenue of $4.15 billion. The company said it is on track for mid-teens profit growth this year.
Still, Morgan Stanley noted that Monsanto doubters may be left thinking that by not posting a big surprise with the second-quarter numbers, the company’s ability to increase guidance later this year is limited, according to the Wall Street Journal. The company did boost its free cash flow guidance to $900 million to $1.1 billion from $800-$900 million, the Journal reported.
Monsanto is the second major agriculture stock to deliver profit results in the past week. Mosaic Company (MOS), the second-largest North American fertilizer producer, posted results last week. That stock is down 3% as is Potash Corp of Saskatchew (POT), the world’s largest fertilizer producer. Agrium (AGU) is also down 2% while CF Industries Holdings (CF) is lower by 3%.
Investors can track the Agricultural Chemical and Fertilizer Stocks Index for performance trends and a suite of other metrics at tickerspy.com.
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