P&G ups sales outlook but higher costs hit 2Q profits – mySA

NEW YORK (AP) — Procter & Gamble Co., the maker of Crest toothpaste and Charmin toilet paper, raised its full-year sales outlook, though the consumer products giant cautioned that higher commodity prices continue to squeeze profits.

The upgraded outlook, issued Thursday, came as the Cincinnati-based company reported lower fiscal second-quarter earnings and sales from a year ago, though the results beat Wall Street expectations.

Like many consumer product makers, P&G has been forced to raise prices on its wide array of products to offset higher costs in transportation, labor and other areas. In the latest quarter, P&G said it had to hike prices by 10%. Still, shoppers have remained fairly resilient to buying essentials, and the company has offered various cheaper options within its portfolio to hold on to price-sensitive shoppers.

“The consumer is holding up remarkably well in the U.S.,” P&G finance chief Andre Schulten told reporters on a call Thursday. “We don’t see any significant shifts that are notable.”

P&G reported earnings of $3.93 billion, or $1.59 per share, for the quarter ended Dec. 31. That compares with $4.22 billion, or $1.66 per share, in the year-ago period.

The results were slightly above Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of nine analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.58 per share.

The company said that beauty products increased on average by 9%, while fabric and home care saw increases of 13%.

The world’s largest consumer products maker posted revenue of $20.77 billion in the period, down 1% from $20.95 billion in the year-ago period. Eight analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $20.61 billion.

The company said it projects total sales for the current fiscal year to range between unchanged and a 1% drop, up from its previous forecast of a 1% to 3% decline. The company maintained its full-year earnings outlook but said it could be at the lower end of guidance because of higher commodity and material costs.

In premarket trading, shares slipped nearly 2% to $142.80.


Elements of this story was generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on PG at https://www.zacks.com/ap/PG

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