Canadian Manufacturing

Deere getting dinged by weak farm, energy sectors

Weak commodity prices are holding back farmers and resources companies from buying new equipment

NEW YORK—Deere & Co. cut its full-year outlook because it expects the weak agriculture and energy sectors to continue dragging down equipment sales.

The agricultural equipment manufacturer has been facing a downturn in equipment sales as weak commodity prices hold back farmers from buying new equipment. Meanwhile, a weak energy sector has been dragging down construction equipment sales.

The Moline, Ill.-based company earned US$511.6 million, a 37 per cent drop from the same period a year earlier. Earnings of $1.53 per share surpassed Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.47 per share.

The company reported an 18 per cent drop in revenue to $6.84 billion in the period, which fell short of Street forecasts. Six analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $7.11 billion.

Deere reduced it’s outlook for 2015 net income to $1.8 billion from $1.9 billion.

Deere said industry sales for agricultural equipment in the U.S. and Canada are forecast to be down about 25 per cent for 2015. Worldwide sales of construction and forestry equipment are forecast to be down about 5 per cent for the year.

Deere shares have risen 2.5 per cent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has decreased 1 per cent. The stock has climbed nearly 6 per cent in the last 12 months.

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