Oct 3 (Reuters) - Global agribusiness group Monsanto Co posted a fourth-quarter loss on Wednesday, as expected, amid a seasonally sluggish sales period.
Shares slumped in premarket trade after Monsanto said its sales overall totaled $2.11 billion for the quarter ended Aug. 31, down from $2.25 billion a year before, as corn seeds and trait sales declined year to year.
Monsanto, the world’s largest seed company and a developer of genetically engineered corn, soybeans, and other crops, posted a quarterly loss of 44 cents a share on an ongoing basis that excludes one-time items, worse than the loss of 22 cents a share a year before but in line with analysts’ expectations.
On a net basis, the company lost $229 million, or 42 cents a share, for the quarter, compared with a loss of $112 million, or 21 cents a share, a year before. The company projected 2013 ongoing and as-reported earnings per share of $4.18 to $4.32. Analysts had been looking for earnings of up to $4.38 per share.