Maple Leaf Slides as Pork Prices Depress EarningsLauren S. Murphy
Maple Leaf Foods Inc., the Canadian producer of foods from hamburgers to frozen pasta, fell the most in more than two years after second-quarter earnings missed analysts’ estimates due to global pork and raw material volatility.
Maple Leaf declined 7.4 percent to C$14.35 at the close in Toronto, the biggest drop since November 2010. The shares have jumped 20 percent this year, compared with a 0.4 percent gain in the Standard and Poor’s/TSX Composite Index.
The Toronto-based company posted per-share profit, excluding one-time items, of 2 cents, trailing the 15-cent average of 15 estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales declined 3.7 percent to C$1.21 billion ($1.18 billion).
“Hog production returns, global pork markets and volatile raw-material markets all contributed to a material year-over-year earnings decline,” Michael H. McCain, chief executive officer of Maple Leaf, said in a statement.
Maple Leaf is in the midst of a five-year overhaul, which began in 2010, that includes closing eight plants and cutting 1,550 jobs by 2014.