Corteva posts weak revenue, disappointing outlook

(File photo by Lisa Guenther)

Reuters — Corteva Inc. on Wednesday missed analysts’ expectations for second-quarter revenue and its reinstated full-year forecast came in below estimates, sending the seed and pesticide producer’s shares down as much as nine per cent in extended trade.

Good weather and higher planted area shifted corn volumes in North America to the first quarter, while the pesticides business was pressured by a strong performance last year when Latin America’s growing season started earlier, the company said.

Corteva, which had suspended its 2020 forecast in May due to uncertainty from the COVID-19 crisis, said it now expects earnings per share between $1.25 and $1.45 for the year, below analysts’ estimates of $1.40 at its midpoint (all figures US$).

It estimated sales to rise one to two per cent, which translates to a range of between $13.98 billion and $14.12 billion, also lower than analysts’ estimates of $14.2 billion.

Wednesday’s outlook was also slightly below Corteva’s original estimates for earnings between $1.45 and $1.55 per share on sales of about $14.5 billion, reflecting a weaker Brazilian real and lower corn demand.

Corteva said demand and prices for corn have not yet seen a complete rebound. A third of all U.S. corn produced is used to make ethanol, which has taken a hit as pandemic-driven travel restrictions hurt demand for gasoline into which the biofuel is blended.

The Wilmington, Delaware-based company earned $1.26 per share for the three months ended June 30, beating analysts’ estimates of $1.24, in part due to cost cuts.

The company, spun off from chemical conglomerate DowDuPont, said net sales fell 6.6 per cent to $5.19 billion, missing estimates of $5.47 billion, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

— Reporting for Reuters by Arathy S Nair in Bangalore.

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