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Earnings Preview: Campbell Soup likely to post weak Q4 results

Campbell Soup Co (CPB) is set to report its fourth-quarter 2018 results on Thursday before the market opens. Analysts expect the canned soup maker’s top and bottom line for the quarter to beat their estimates. The acquisition of Snyder’s-Lance and the pre-tax impairment charges from Campbell Fresh segment would hurt the bottom line results.

Analysts, on average, expect Campbell Soup to report earnings of $0.24 per share for the fourth quarter compared to $0.52 in the prior-year quarter. Sales are anticipated to climb by 34.8% to $2.24 billion. Most of the analysts are recommending a “hold” rating with an average price target of $36.92.

After two consecutive strong quarterly results, investors are looking forward to weak earnings with analysts expecting a 53.8% year-over-year dip. Growth estimates are likely to fall by 6.2% per annum in the current year and 5.3% in the next year. Traders could take a stand based on the company’s upcoming results on Thursday.

Picture Courtesy: Campbell Soup

During the recently completed third-quarter, the acquisitions of Snyder’s-Lance and Pacific Foods lead the company to post a loss compared to a profit a year ago. However, the top line rose by 15%.

Due to expenses from Snyder’s-Lance acquisition, Campbell Soup revised its adjusted EPS and sales guidance for the fiscal year 2018. Net sales had been expected to grow 10% to 11% and adjusted EPS are anticipated to be $2.85 to $2.90, down 5% to 6%.

The company is expected to highlight about sales from its Americas Simple Meals and Beverages, Global Biscuit and Snacks as well as Campbell Fresh segments. Traders are expecting Campbell Soup to issue guidance for the fiscal year 2019 lower than what analysts are predicting. Zacks Equity Research believes that the food and beverage products maker doesn’t appear a compelling earnings-beat candidate.

Shares of Campbell Soup opened Tuesday’s regular session in the negative territory. The stock had dropped about 17% so far this year and more than 22% in the past one year.

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