Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

General Mills profit beats estimates, lifts outlook

The General Mills logo is seen on a box of Cheerios cereal in Evanston, Ill.


General Mills Inc. posted higher-than-expected quarterly earnings on Wednesday and raised its full-year outlook only slightly as it sees higher ingredient costs, a higher tax rate and a possible currency devaluation in Venezuela.

The foods maker behind Cheerios cereal, Progresso soups and Haagen Dazs ice cream said it expects ingredient costs inflation at the high end of its 2 per cent to 3 per cent forecast due to the summer drought in the U.S. Midwest that pushed up prices for corn and other grains.

In addition, General Mills expects a higher tax rate in the second half of its fiscal year than in the first and is anticipating a possible currency devaluation in Venezuela.

Story continues below advertisement

"As we move into the second half, the global operating environment remains challenging," said chief executive officer Ken Powell.

In the company's fiscal second quarter, ended Nov. 25, net earnings rose to $541.6-million, or 82 cents per share, from $444.8-million, or 67 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, earnings were 86 cents per share, topping analysts' average estimate of 79 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Sales increased nearly 6 per cent to $4.88-billion, meeting analysts' expectations, helped by the recently acquired Yoki Alimentos business in Brazil.

The company now expects to earn $2.65 per share to $2.67 per share in fiscal 2013, excluding accounting adjustments, a tax benefit and restructuring and integration costs. Its earlier forecast called for earnings of about $2.65 per share.

Report an error

The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨