(By Balachander S) Diversified technology company 3M Co (NYSE: MMM
) reduced its earnings forecast after posting an unexpected decline in sales due to tough economic conditions and currency impacts. Shares retreated 2.73 percent in premarket.
For the third quarter, earnings per share (EPS) increased 9 percent to $1.65, matching Wall Street projections. Earnings attributable to 3M grew 7.4 percent to $1.16 billion.
Net sales declined 0.5 percent to $7.49 billion, while consensus estimate called in for a growth of 1.30 percent. Currency impacted sales by 3.1 percent.
Total operating income margins were 22.4 percent, with all of MMM's six business segments recording above 21 percent.
Segment wise, organic local-currency sales grew 3.3 percent in Industrial and Transportation. Sales gained 0.7 percent in Safety, Security and Protection Services and 1.4 percent Consumer and Office. Health Care sales rose 4.3 percent. Sales increased 1.3 percent in Display and Graphics.
On a geographic basis, organic local-currency sales gained 10.5 percent in Latin America/Canada, 2.3 percent in the United States. In Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) sales rose 0.8 percent. Asia Pacific sales edged 0.1 percent lower.
Looking ahead for the full year, the company now forecasts EPS in the range of $6.27 to $6.35, down from $6.35 to $6.50 projected earlier, while analysts' expect $6.40. MMM expects organic sales growth of 2 percent to 2.5 percent, versus prior view of 2 percent to 5 percent.
MMM shares, which have been trading in the 52-week range between $75.49 and $95.46, ended previous trading session at $92.53.