Philip Morris International Reports Lower Profits for Q2
The world’s top cigarette maker, Philip Morris International, reported profits for the second quarter dropped 3.8 percent as lower shipments of cigarettes and currency shifts affected the revenues.
The tobacco group had posted raise in sales in previous quarters, contributed by solid performance in Asia and price hikes in key markets. Profits have also increased as the owner of such world-famous brands as Marlboro and Parliament grew in developing markets and helped to offset lower volumes in developed markets, across European Union.
Here are the highlights of the Philip Morris International quarterly report:
The company reported adjusted earnings of $1.36 a share, 0.7 percent higher than during the same period in 2011. Nevertheless, the earnings could post double digit growth, in case they would not have been affected by currency fluctuations and shifts in Japanese market.
Operating income lost 2.9 percent to equal $3.6 billion, whereas net earnings totaled $2.3 billion.
PMI reported volume of cigarette shipments dropped 1.2 percent, excluding acquisitions. At the same time, the shipping volume grew by 1.4 percent, when excluding acquisitions and the Japan market issue associated with 6.3 billion cigarettes sold in 2011.
Cigarette Volumes in European Union fell by 9.4 percent, whereas posting 5.1-percent growth in region that includes the Middle East, Africa and Eastern Europe. In addition, the company reported growth of 0.7 percent in Asia, and decline of 3 percent in Latin America and Canada.
As regards the revenues, they reached $8.1 billion, going down by 1.8 percent on year-to-year basis, excluding taxes, but when excluding currency shifts and acquisitions, revenues added 2.9 percent.
“In spite of forecasted Japan market share issues and currency fluctuations, we had a storng second-quarter performance,” declared Louis C. Camilleri, Chief Executive Officer of Philip Morris International. “Our wide geographic diversity, portfolio consisting of world-class brands, and a solid pricing power are the key points of our persisting capability to benefit from growth opportunities across the world, which helps us to offset uncertainty in those markets where business conditions are unstable, due to economic downturn.”
Forecast for 2012
The company remained unchanged its outlook for the full year, with expected earnings of $5.10 to $5.20 per share, at the present exchange rates, in comparison to $4.85 posted in 2011.
Share Buyback Program
Philip Morris International re-purchased 17.8 million shares, spending $1.5 billion during the second quarter. It has also unveiled its new three-year $18 billion share repurchase program, set to begin this August.
Philip Morris International got separated from Altria Group in 2008, to concentrate on the overseas markets. At the moment, Altria posted a remarkable growth in its market price, and has brushed aside worries over anti-smoking policies, hefty fines and litigation. Some experts believe, that contrary to anticipations, the number of tobacco users in the United States is not going down anymore, and therefore, the company will continue to post solid business results.