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Clorox Eases Off Earlier Estimates

Rainy weather doused the original fourth-quarter earnings estimates of Clorox (CLX - Get Report).

The consumer products maker lowered its earnings estimate for the fiscal fourth quarter to a range of 67 cents or 68 cents a share from its original forecast of 67 cents to 70 cents, according to a statement released Wednesday. Clorox now expects "low single-digit volume and sales growth compared with the year-ago quarter."

The company said the wet spring weather lowered consumer demand for its seasonal products, like charcoal.

In the fourth quarter last year, Clorox earned 63 cents a share on sales of $1.14 billion.

For the fiscal year, Clorox now anticipates earnings of $2.22 to $2.23 a share. Previously, it expected earnings of $2.22 to $2.25. A survey of 11 analysts by Thomson First Call predicts the company's earnings will reach $2.24 a share for fiscal 2003 and $2.50 a share for fiscal 2004.

During morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange, Clorox shares were down $1.85, or 4%, to $43.40.

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