ConAgra Brands Fiscal Q3 EPS Beats, Sales Lag

ConAgra Brands (CAG) reported early Thursday fiscal Q3 adjusted earnings of $0.61 per diluted share, up from $0.48 per share a year ago. The result was above the $0.57 average estimate from analysts polled by Capital IQ.

Total revenue during the 13 weeks that ended Feb. 25 rose to $1.99 billion from $1.98 billion a year ago. That lagged the $2.0-billion consensus.

Updating its full-year 2018 guidance, the firm said adjusted diluted EPS is expected to come in a range of $2.03 to $2.05 during fiscal 2018, which is above the Street’s forecast of $2.01. The company’s most recent previous guidance had been for adjusted EPS in a range of $1.95 to $2.02.

Organic net sales growth is anticipated to be near the high end of the range of down 2% to flat.

Subject to market and other conditions, the company disclosed the repurchase of about $1.1 billion of shares in fiscal 2018. This comes as the company repurchased about 8 million shares for $280 million in the quarter.

“Strong underlying trends are enabling us to increase our fiscal 2018 adjusted EPS guidance above the range provided at the CAGNY conference in February, which already accounted for the impact of tax reform,” CEO Sean Connolly said.

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