March 1, 2018 / 1:16 PM / 6 months ago

BRIEF-Pinnacle Foods Q4 Earnings Per Share $3.71

March 1 (Reuters) - Pinnacle Foods Inc:

* SEES FY 2018 ADJUSTED EARNINGS PER SHARE $2.85 TO $2.95

* SEES 2018 ADJUSTED DILUTED EPS IN THE RANGE OF $2.85 TO $2.95‍​

* QTRLY NET SALES $883.5 MILLION VERSUS $858.5 MILLION

* Q4 EARNINGS PER SHARE VIEW $0.94, REVENUE VIEW $895.6 MILLION -- THOMSON REUTERS I/B/E/S

* PINNACLE FOODS-IN 2018,UNDERLYING NET SALES EXPECTED TO GROW AHEAD OF CATEGORY TRENDS,&BENEFIT OF $11 MILLION FROM LAPPING AJ RECALL TO ALSO DRIVE GROWTH

* IMPACT OF EARLIER EASTER IN 2018 EXPECTED TO MODESTLY BENEFIT Q1 2018 NET SALES, WITH CORRESPONDING OFFSET IN Q2

* FOR 2018, NET INTEREST EXPENSE IS FORECASTED IN RANGE OF $123 MILLION TO $126 MILLION

* QTRLY ADJUSTED EARNINGS PER SHARE $0.94

* SEES 2018 CAPITAL EXPENDITURES IN THE RANGE OF $155 MILLION TO $165 MILLION

* "FAVORABLE SPREAD BETWEEN PRODUCTIVITY AND INFLATION" IS EXPECTED TO NARROW SIGNIFICANTLY IN 2018

* INPUT COST INFLATION FOR 2018 ESTIMATED IN RANGE OF 3.8% TO 4.2%, WITH FIRST HALF INFLATION HIGHER THAN THE SECOND HALF

* 2017 DILUTED EPS INCLUDES ONE-TIME, NON-CASH BENEFIT OF $2.80 PER SHARE AS RESULT OF U.S. TAX REFORM

* PINNACLE FOODS - REGARDING LONG-TERM GROSS MARGIN OBJECTIVE, VO EXPECTS TO ACHIEVE TARGET OF 300-400 BASIS POINTS OF IMPROVEMENT VERSUS 2016 BY 2020

* FY2018 EARNINGS PER SHARE VIEW $2.84 -- THOMSON REUTERS I/B/E/S

* QTRLY UNDERLYING NET SALES DECLINE LARGELY REFLECTED REDUCTION OF RETAIL INVENTORY LEVELS IN QUARTER AT SEVERAL LARGE CUSTOMERS‍​ Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

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