CHICAGO Agribusiness firm Bunge Ltd (BG.N) reported weaker-than-expected third-quarter results, hurt by drought and other adverse weather conditions that have reduced global harvests.
The four "ABCD" firms that have dominated the global agricultural business for decades -- Archer Daniel Midlands Co (ADM.N), Bunge Ltd, Cargill Inc CARG.UL and Louis Dreyfus Corp LOUDR.UL -- are grappling with reduced volumes of crops and unusual trading patterns due to poor weather.
The company said the current market environment, shaped by the U.S. drought, continues to be volatile and stocks of corn and soybeans continue to be at low levels.
Bunge has broad exposure to the weather as it operates as an agricultural supplier and consumer.
The company processes, stores and sells agricultural products as part of its agribusiness operations. Under the same business, it also markets vegetable oils for the biodiesel industry. Bunge is also among the top sugar and ethanol producers.
Bunge still managed 15 percent volume growth in its agribusiness segment during the quarter, helped by strong export demand and higher oilseed processing.
New York-based Bunge said net earnings rose to $297 million or $1.92 per share from the $140 million or 89 cents per share a year ago. Excluding one-time items, the company earned $2.08 per share.
Net sales rose 10 percent to $17.29 billion.
Analysts on average expected the company to report earnings of $2.17 per share before one-time items on revenue of $17.80 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Bunge's shares closed at $68.28 on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange
(Reporting By Tom Polansek in Chicago and Siddharth Cavale in Bangalore; Editing by Sreejiraj Eluvangal)