NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Monsanto (MON - Get Report) has been sapping the strength of the Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO) this year and did so again Monday, when it lost 0.6% on a day when MOO gained 0.4% and the S&P 500 advanced 0.8%.
Year to date, Monsanto has lost 13.6%. Because Monsanto still makes up a hefty 7.75% of assets in the MOO, the company's shares have dragged down the ETF, which has gained half as much as the S&P 500 this year (4% vs. 8%).
Monsanto plans to report earnings Wednesday, and the news should set the ETF's tone for the rest of the week.
In the previous two quarters, Monsanto earned 2 cents a share and then lost 2 cents share. Earnings estimates for the most recently completed quarter have come down almost 13% in the past three months, to $1.73 per share.Analysts are more positive about the current quarter that ends in May and have raised estimates by about 15% over the past three months. Positive guidance will probably be needed to break this stock out of its funk, however, but some traders expect it, with options buyers being heavily bullish of late.
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