(By Balaseshan) Consumer-products giant Procter & Gamble Co (NYSE:PG) reported a 45 percent jump in quarterly earnings due to the gain on sale of the Snacks business. Despite revenue missing consensus marginally, earnings exceeded Street's expectations, sending its shares up 2.35% in premarket.
Core earnings per share (EPS) were $0.82, flat with the same period last year, topping market expectations of $0.77. The benefits from cost savings and pricing were offset by the decrease in net sales and higher commodity costs.
Additionally, P&G completed the sale of the Snacks business in the fourth quarter, resulting in a net gain of $0.48 per share.
Net sales declined 1 percent to $20.21 billion, due to geographic mix, while consensus estimate was $20.26 billion. Organic sales rose 3 percent, with four of five business segments posting quarterly growth.
Net profit jumped 45 percent to $3.63 billion for the fourth quarter, while EPS climbed 48 percent to $1.24.
Gross margin contracted 40 basis points to 48.1 percent due to higher commodity costs, unfavorable geographic and product mix and restructuring charges, and operating margin also shrank 30 basis points to 15.2 percent.
Looking ahead for the first quarter ending September, PG sees core EPS between $0.91 and $0.97 and net sales to decline four to six percent. Analysts expect EPS of $1.03 and sales to decline 2.90 percent.
For the full year 2013, the company now expects core EPS of $3.80 to $4.00 and net sales to be in line to down two percent versus the prior year, including a negative four percent impact from foreign exchange. Previously, PG had anticipated core EPS growth to be mid-to-high single digits. Analysts expect EPS of $3.88 on sales growth of 0.70 percent.
The stock, which has been trading between $57.56 and $67.95 over the past year, ended Thursday's regular session down 0.78 percent at $63.51.