October 31, 2019 / 10:10 AM / 17 days ago

Corteva posts smaller loss as North America volumes rise

Oct 31 (Reuters) - Pesticides and seeds producer Corteva Inc posted a smaller quarterly loss on Thursday as historic floods in the U.S. Midwest delayed the spring planting season, pushing seed sales into the third quarter.

The producer of soy and corn seeds said total volumes rose 3% in the quarter, even as it faces challenges from an ongoing U.S.-China trade war that has cut U.S. exports of soybeans to top buyer China.

Income in its crop protection business, which sells insecticides and herbicides, took a hit the company booked some of its expected third-quarter Latin America sales.

Dry weather in Brazil also delayed planting in top soybean exporter to the fourth quarter.

The company also said it now expects full-year core earnings to come in at the bottom end of its prior forecast of $1.9 billion to $2.05 billion, largely due to a weaker Brazilian real.

The former agricultural unit of DowDuPont also tightened its 2019 operating earnings per share forecast to between $1.20 and $1.26 per share, from its earlier estimate of $1.06 to $1.31.

Net loss from continuing operations attributable to Corteva narrowed to $527 million, or 69 cents per share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, from $5.34 billion, or $7.13 per share, as the year earlier period included a $4.5 billion goodwill impairment charge.

Excluding items, Corteva posted a loss of $0.39 per share.

Net sales fell 2% to $1.91 billion, primarily due to weaker Brazilian real and the euro, while organic sales stayed flat compared to a year earlier. (Reporting by Nishara Karuvalli Pathikkal in Bengaluru Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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