Philip Morris International also bought Philippines company Fortune Tobacco Co. in February 2010, bolstering its Asian business.

Swings in currency markets are also having an effect. Last quarter, the company narrowed its earnings guidance for the year because of unfavorable foreign currency exchange rates.

When the U.S. dollar is rising against the world's other currencies, companies that sell goods internationally take a hit when converting revenue in foreign currencies back into the dollar. That effect is particularly strong for Philip Morris International, because it does all its business overseas.

WHY IT MATTERS: Philip Morris International, with offices in New York and in Lausanne, Switzerland, is the world's second-biggest cigarette company after state-controlled China National Tobacco Corp.

Richmond, Va.,-based Altria Group Inc., the owner of Philip Morris USA, spun off Philip Morris International in 2008. Altria is the largest U.S. cigarette seller.

WHAT'S EXPECTED: Analysts on average expect Philip Morris International to report adjusted earnings of $1.22 per share on revenue of $8.03 billion, according to FactSet. Analysts typically exclude one-time items.

LAST YEAR'S QUARTER: Philip Morris International reported adjusted net income of $1.01per share on revenue of $7.67 billion, excluding excise taxes.

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Michael Felberbaum can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/MLFelberbaum.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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