Minerva Rises Most in a Week After Debt Cut, Cash Generation

Minerva SA, Brazil’s least indebted meatpacker, rose the most in almost a week after lower cattle prices helped it to generate cash and cut debt.

Minerva rose 2.9 percent to 12.97 reais at 12:09 p.m. in Sao Paulo. Earlier the stock rose to 13.15 reais, the most intraday since March 15. The Bovespa (IBOV) stock index dropped 0.5 percent.

Minerva, which generated free cash flow for a fifth consecutive quarter, had cash flow of 63.9 million reais ($32.1 million) in the three months ended Dec. 31 after cattle acquisition prices fell, it said in a statement yesterday. The company, based in Barretos, Brazil, cut debt to 2.8 times earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization in the fourth quarter from 3.7 times a year ago, it said.

Minerva had “positive cash flow generation, despite pressure from operating expenses,” Ricardo Boiati, an analyst with Banco Bradesco SA (BBDC4), said in a note to clients today. He has the company’s rating under review.

The company posted a net loss of 21.8 million reais in the quarter, compared with a gain of 14.8 million reais a year ago.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lucia Kassai in Sao Paulo at lkassai@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net

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