News 220 views last update:6 Aug 2012

ADM oilseed business boosts Q1 sales

Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) demonstrated its strength in oilseeds processing and agricultural services, despite a slowing of the ethanol boom. First-quarter earnings of US$441 million were 9% more than in the same period a year ago.

Sales rose 36% to $12.83 billion from $9.45 billion a year earlier, far above the $10.64 billion expected by analysts. Profit in ADM's oilseeds processing business rose nearly 23% to $209 million from $170 million a year ago, due to strong demand worldwide for protein meal and oil. Corn processing operating profit declined 12% to $253 million due to lower ethanol sales prices and volumes and higher net corn costs. Ethanol income declined 52% before taxes.

Operating profit from sweeteners and starches jumped 38% to $164 million on higher average sweetener and starch selling prices. Agricultural services results nearly doubled to $229 million.

"Where excellent first-quarter earnings of a year ago reflected steep growth in the ethanol market, our record first-quarter earnings this year demonstrate our strengths in sweeteners and starches, oilseed processing and our global capabilities in grain merchandising and handling," said chief executive Patricia Woertz.

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