(By Balachander) Kellogg Co. (NYSE: K) posted double-digit sales growth for the fourth quarter, topping market expectations, and the ready-to-eat cereal food maker backed its 2013 outlook.
Underlying earnings per share (EPS) increased to 67 cents from 64 cents for the fourth quarter.
Kellogg's net loss per share narrowed to 9 cents from 54 cents. Results included mark-to-market charge of 74 cents for the three months ended December 2012.
Net sales jumped 18 percent to $3.6 billion. Costs of goods sold increased 11 percent.
Wall Street analysts, on average, expected earnings of $0.66 per share on revenue of $3.44 billion.
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Kellogg North America and International sales grew 12.3 percent and 31 percent, respectively.
Selling, general and administrative expense rose 6.4 percent.
For the full year 2013, Kellogg reaffirmed its guidance for reported net sales growth of roughly 7 percent. The company expects EPS to increase between five and seven percent.
In May 2012, Kellogg completed purchase of Pringles potato chips business from Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) in a $2.695 billion all-cash transaction. The Pringles acquisition makes Kellogg the world's second-largest savory snacks company with $1.5 billion in sales across more than 140 countries.
The company's brands include Corn Flakes, Frosted Flakes and Rice Krispies.
Kellogg ended Monday's regular trading session at $58.10. The stock has been trading the 52-week range between $46.33 and $59.00.