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Pepsi Bottling's Profit Slips

The company reiterates its full-year earnings guidance.

Pepsi Bottling

(PBG)

posted a fall in first-quarter profit but reiterated its full-year earnings guidance.

The Pepsi beverage distributor earned $33 million, or 12 cents a share, compared with $54 million, or 19 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Before a change in accounting principles, the company earned $39 million, or 14 cents a share. Analysts were expecting 13 cents a share.

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"Our results this past quarter reflect the impact of a number of challenging conditions," said John T. Cahill, chief executive. "The shortfall in our volume growth, particularly in the U.S., was the principal driver behind the decline in our earnings." The Somers, N.Y.-based company said worldwide physical case volume was down 3% for the quarter.

Revenue was $1.87 billion, compared with $1.77 billion in the prior-year period.

Looking to full-year 2003, Pepsi Bottling expects to earn $1.61 to $1.67 a share, excluding the effect of accounting changes. Analysts expect $1.62 a share, on average. The company earned $1.46 a share in 2002.

Shares of Pepsi Bottling were recently up 0.3% at $18.85 on the news.