Whirlpool ( WHR) said Thursday that a $10 million to $12 million after-tax charge to second-quarter earnings will largely offset a $13.5 million gain also taken during the quarter, but that its full-year earnings expectation won't be affected.

The company maintained its 2003 earnings estimate of $5.90 to $6.10 a share, including the gain and the charge, which tops analysts' current consensus estimate of $5.56 a share.

The gain of $13.5 million, or 19 cents a share, will occur after a change to the company's retiree health care plans. Effective in January 2004, employees who retire from Whirlpool will receive a company-funded health care savings account for each year of continuous service beginning at age 40. The account will be reduced each year by paying for 80% of the cost of retiree health care plans, Whirlpool said.

The changes to the health care plan are a part of the company's ongoing effort to manage costs and strengthen competitiveness.

Additional costs related to the 2001 recall of certain microwave oven hood combination products will result in the second-quarter charge of $10 million to $12 million, or 14 cents to 17 cents a share, the company said. In the second quarter, analysts expect the company to earn $1.32 a share. Whirlpool earned $1.48 a share in last year's quarter.

Shares of the company closed at $62.06 Wednesday.

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