(By Balachander) McCormick & Co. Inc. (NYSE:MKC) posted a 9 percent increase in earnings for the second quarter helped by double-digit growth in sales and the spice maker backed its forecast for the full year.
McCormick, which also provides herbs and extracts, earned $80.4 million or 60 cents a share for the second quarter, up from $73.6 million or 55 cents per share in the year-ago quarter.
Sales rose 11.4 percent to $984 million boosted by acquisitions, higher volume and product mix as well as pricing actions.
Analysts, on average, polled by Thomson Reuters expected earnings per share of 55 cents on sales of $970 million.
Gross profit margin shrank to 39.5 percent from 39.7 percent due to the company's cost savings plan.
Sales from the company's consumer business and industrial business units climbed 14 percent and 8 percent, respectively.
Looking ahead for full year 2012, the company continues to forecast earnings per share in the range of $3.01 to $3.06, while analysts expect $3.05.
The stock, which has been trading between $43.36 and $59.24 over the past year, closed Tuesday's regular trading at $57.42.