Shares of Monsanto (MON) are having a nice day thanks to a very strong earnings report. Earnings jumped to $1 a share from just 46 cents a share a year ago. Wall Street was expecting just 59 cents a share. Monsanto’s bottom line includes eight cents a share from a tax-related gain, and two cents a share from continuing operations.
“Morningstar analyst Ben Johnson said the results were surprisingly strong, particularly in light of signs that farmers may be cutting back on inputs such as Monsanto’s herbicide products due to economic concerns.
“Monsanto seems to have bucked what has been a negative trend,” Johnson said.
“For the first quarter, Monsanto said strong demand in Brazil for Roundup and other glyphosate-based herbicides led sales increases.
“First-quarter results were also boosted by a 31 percent jump in soybean sales from a year earlier, and vegetable seeds’ net sales that grew by 21 percent, thanks largely to acquisition in June of Netherlands-based De Ruiter Seeds, Monsanto said.”
The company also increased its full-year EPS estimate to a range of $4.40 to $4.50, up from its previous range of $4.20 to $4.40.