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Chemical Producer Monsanto Widens Loss

October 12, 2006|From the Associated Press

Monsanto Co.'s loss widened in its fiscal fourth quarter as higher sales of herbicides failed to offset lower sales of seeds and related products.

The company also forecast profit for 2007 that was below what Wall Street had expected. Its shares fell 5.3%.

The St. Louis-based herbicide and biotech seed producer said its loss totaled $144 million, or 27 cents a share, in the three months ended Aug. 31 compared with a loss of $125 million, or 23 cents, a year earlier. Revenue climbed 9% to $1.39 billion.

Analysts had expected revenue of $1.34 billion, according to a poll by Thomson Financial.

Excluding certain items, including a provision for taxes stemming from a one-time repatriation of overseas earnings, the loss for the latest quarter was 21 cents a share, equaling Wall Street's consensus estimate.

Monsanto said it expected 2007 earnings of $1.50 to $1.57 a share. Analysts had been looking for a profit of $1.62 a share.

Monsanto shares declined $2.46 to $43.95.

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