Tyson Foods

(TSN) - Get Tyson Foods, Inc. Class A Report

beat analysts' first-quarter estimates by 2 cents, but the bottom line fell more than 50% from the year-ago period.

In the first fiscal quarter of 2001, the chicken producer and processor earned $27 million, or 12 cents a share, surpassing the consensus estimate of 10 cents culled from analysts polled by

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First Call/Thomson Financial

. The company earned $57 million, or 25 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.

Tyson, which is based in Springdale, Ark., reported revenue of $1.74 billion for the quarter, down from $1.78 billion in the same quarter last year. The company attributed its disappointing performance to depressed market conditions for chicken.

Tyson lost 55 cents, or 4%, to $13.39 in recent

New York Stock Exchange

trading.