The Procter & Gamble Company (PG) beat analyst expectations on earnings but missed out on revenue for its final quarter of 2018. Shares dropped 2% in pre-market trading. The company reported a 3% increase in net sales to $16.5 billion for the fourth quarter of 2018 compared to the same period last year. Organic sales grew 1% driven by a 3% increase in organic shipment volume. Total volume increased 2%.
Net earnings attributable to Procter & Gamble dropped 15% to $1.89 billion while EPS declined 12% to $0.72 from the prior-year period, hurt by higher non-core restructuring charges and early debt retirement costs. Core EPS rose 11% to $0.94, driven by the sales increase, lower core effective tax rate and reduction in shares outstanding.
P&G has been dealing with heavy competition which has led to decreases in its market share. During the quarter, the company saw sales declines in its grooming as well as baby care businesses.
For the full year of 2019, P&G expects organic sales to grow 2% to 3%. All-in sales growth is expected to be in-line to up 1%, including a headwind of about 2% from FX along with acquisitions and divestitures. GAAP EPS is expected to increase 16% to 23% compared to last year’s EPS of $3.67. Core EPS is expected to grow 3% to 8% in 2019 and at the midpoint of the range, core EPS guidance is $4.45.