DuPont Blames the Weather for Earnings Miss

Trey Thoelcke

E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company (NYSE: DD), commonly known as DuPont, reported first-quarter results before markets opened Thursday. The diversified chemicals company posted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.58 on revenues of $10.1 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported adjusted EPS of $1.56 on revenues of $10.41 billion. First-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $1.59 and $10.45 billion in revenues.

Operating margins improved across most segments. However, the company said adverse weather conditions reduced earnings by an estimated $0.07 per share.

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The company’s CEO said:

We achieved substantial earnings growth in most of our segments in the first quarter as we advanced our strategic and operational priorities. … We delivered near record earnings per share despite the challenges of harsh weather and differences in year-on-year comparisons in our Agriculture Segment, and our key initiatives remain on track.

Those initiatives that remain on track include DuPont’s productivity initiatives, share repurchase program and Performance Chemicals separation.

The company reaffirmed its full-year 2014 operating earnings of $4.20 to $4.45 per share, which would be 8% to 15% higher than in 2013. Consensus forecasts so far call for EPS of $4.32 and revenue of $37.15 billion for the full year, as well as $1.49 per share and of $10.43 billion in the current quarter.

DuPont shares were inactive in premarket trading Thursday, after closing Wednesday at $67.72 in a 52-week range of $48.23 to $68.82. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $68.64 before the report.

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