DuPont Misses but Reaffirms

The company says rising local prices help to offset persistent gains in energy costs.
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missed first-quarter earnings targets but reaffirmed full-year guidance and boosted its dividend.

For its quarter ended last month, the Wilmington, Del., chemicals giant earned $967 million, or 96 cents a share, up from the year-ago $668 million, or 66 cents a share. But the latest-quarter results missed the Thomson First Call analyst consensus estimate by a nickel.

Revenue fell to $7.83 billion from $8.21 billion a year ago, supported by a 5% rise in local prices that offset continued gains in energy and ingredient costs.

The company reaffirmed its full-year earnings forecast of around $2.75 a share, and boosted its quarterly dividend by 2 cents to 37 cents. DuPont said it now expects current market trends for energy-related costs to increase raw material costs significantly more than previously expected.

DuPont closed Monday at $48.58.