Tyson Foods Stung by Tariffs, Too Much Chicken

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Tyson Foods Inc. (NYSE: TSN) reported fiscal third-quarter 2018 results before markets opened Monday. The food processing company posted adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.50 on revenues of $10.05 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $1.28 on revenues of $9.85 billion. Third-quarter results also compare to consensus estimates for EPS of $1.46 and $10.27 billion in revenues.

A week ago the company warned that it lowered its fiscal year 2018 adjusted EPS estimate from a range of $6.55 to $6.70 to a new range of $5.70 to $6.00. Tyson attributed the change to the “increased tariffs negatively impacting domestic and export prices–primarily chicken and pork.” The tariffs have been partly responsible for an imbalance of supply and demand, leading to drops in the average price of chicken and pork compared to year-ago prices. The company also lowered its estimate of the benefit from last year’s tax cut from $0.85 a share to $0.77 a share. The stock tumbled about 6% to a new 52-week low before turning around.

Tyson President and CEO Tom Hayes said at the time:

The combination of changing global trade policies here and abroad, and the uncertainty of any resolution, have created a challenging market environment of increased volatility, lower prices, and oversupply of protein. We will continue to watch these conditions carefully.

In Monday’s earnings report, Hayes noted only that Tyson’s business grew in the third quarter “even with the headwinds we faced related to oversupply and pricing.”

The company expects fiscal 2018 sales to rise 6% year over year to $40 billion to $41 billion primarily as a result of incremental sales related to its acquisition of AdvancePierre. Sales are forecast to rise to $42 billion in fiscal year 2019. Analysts have a consensus EPS estimate of $1.55 for the fourth quarter and $6.06 for the full fiscal year. Revenue is forecast at $10.31 billion for the current quarter and $40.59 billion for the year. Fiscal year 2019 revenue is estimated at $41.39 billion.

Shares traded up about 2.2% in Monday’s premarket session at $59.00, in a 52-week range of $56.79 to $84.75. The stock closed at $57.75 on Friday. The consensus 12-month price target was $73.20 before this morning’s report.