Monsanto (MON) Tops Q1 Views on LatAm Corn, U.S. Shipments; Guidance Remains Light

January 8, 2013 9:21 AM EST
Monsanto Co. (NYSE: MON) is trading stronger early following solid first-quarter 2013 results across all segments, though guidance was a little tepid.

Sales in the quarter rose 20.5 percent to $2.94 billion, from $2.44 billion in the same period last year. Operating income rose 155 percent to $342 million, or 62 cents per share.

Overall, expectations called for sales of $2.64 billion and EPS of 37 cents.

Leading the charge higher was the Agricultural Productivity segment, sales rising 30.8 percent in the period. The corn opportunity acceleration in Latin America and strong shipments in the United States reflective of a positive order book, Monsanto noted.

Looking to the rest of fiscal 2013, Monsanto raised EPS expectations from a range of $4.18 to $4.32 up to a new range of $4.30 to $4.40. The Street consensus is currently at $4.43.

Right along with market sentiment, Monsanto shares have been trading near 52-week highs, recently hitting a new level of $96.71 on January 3rd. Shares are up 4 percent early.

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