Coors' Earnings Top Expectations
Adolph Coors, parent of No. 3 U.S. brewer Coors Brewing Co., said today fourth-quarter income increased 24 percent, beating forecasts, as its sales volume growth outpaced the U.S. beer industry's.
The maker of Coors Light and other beers said income excluding special items was $15.2 million, or 40 cents per diluted share, up from $12.2 million, or 33 cents a share, a year earlier.
The results topped the Wall Street analysts' forecast of 39 cents per share compiled by First Call/Thomson Financial.
Including special items, fourth quarter net income was $12.0 million, or 32 cents per share, down 2.2 percent from $12.2 million, or 33 cents, a year earlier. Net sales climbed to $582.1 million from $541.5 million in the 1999 quarter. Sales volume grew 4.9 percent from the year-earlier period.
Last month, the stock tumbled after unfavorable comments about the industry by analysts, including a downgrade of Coors' shares. Even so, Coors has outperformed the broader Standard & Poor's 500 index by more than 45 percent over the past year.
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Hasbro to Lay Off 850 Due to Losses
Hasbro, the nation's No. 2 toymaker, announced plans today to cut 850 jobs after poor sales of Pokemon, Furby and Star Wars toys led to a $23 million loss for the year.
The struggling Pawtucket company had announced layoffs last October, but put the figure at 550 at the time. There was no immediate word on where the jobs would be cut.
Hasbro lost $58.4 million in the fourth-quarter, or 34 cents a share, compared to a profit of $155.4 million, or 79 cents a share, in the same period last year.
Sales for the quarter were $1.2 billion, compared to $1.6 billion one year ago.
For the year, Hasbro reported the $23 million loss, or a loss of 13 cents per share, compared to a profit of $286.6 million, or $1.42 per share, the previous year.
Sales for the year were $3.8 billion, compared to $4.2 billion the year before.
The earnings results do not include a $146.1 million pre-tax charge related to laoyffs and reorganization.
Hasbro last month completed the sale of its money-losing Hasbro Interactive division and the Games.com games Web portal to Infogrames Entertainment, which makes games for PlayStation and Nintendo.
Hasbro last year said it also was trying to reduce reliance on toy licensing linked to movies to try to stabilize earnings. Many of the layoffs and reorganization will come in the toymaker's product development, sales, marketing and administrative divisions.
"We are confident we are making the right moves to make Hasbro leaner and more consistently profitable for shareholders," Hasbro chief executive Alan Hassenfeld said. "While 2000 has been a very painful year, we are looking forward to returning Hasbro to profitability in 2001 and beyond."
Hasbro is second to El Segundo, Calif.-based Mattel Inc., and owns the Playskool, Kenner, Tonka, Milton Bradley, Parker Brothers and Galoob toy and game brands.
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WorldCom Profits Fall, Meet Expectations
WorldCom, the No. 2 U.S. long-distance telephone company, today posted lower fourth-quarter profits, in line with lowered expectations, as weakness in the long-distance telephone business offset strong growth in data, Internet and international services.