reaffirmed fourth-quarter earnings guidance late Tuesday, but not before its shares were slaughtered along with those of its poultry-producing rivals.
Shares of the Pittsburg, Texas, chicken farmer plunged 15% Tuesday after an earnings warning from rival
. That Laurel, Miss., poultry pusher saw its stock drop 26% after it said it expected falling chicken prices to hurt fourth-quarter profits.
For its part, Pilgrim's Pride kept its fourth-quarter earnings outlook steady at 70 to 80 cents a share, in line with a projection the company made late last month. The company agreed that prices have been falling but said they remain within its expectations.
"We want to reassure our investors that the commodity sales prices for chicken, while off from the high levels seen this summer, are still within our range of expectations for the fourth fiscal quarter and at levels above the same period last year," said CEO O.B. Goolsby. "Additionally, feed ingredient costs, comprised mainly of corn and soybean meal and which account for approximately 30% of our cost of goods sold, remain at levels consistent with our expectations on July 26, and current prices and recent USDA cost projections remain at levels equal to or below those that existed at such time."
Nonetheless, Pilgrim's Pride fell $4.55 to $23.50. Food giant
, also swept up in the selloff, dropped $1.04 to $18.44.