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Campbell Soup profit warms amid turnaround push

Globe and Mail - Sep 4, 2012

Campbell Soup Co. posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly profit on Tuesday, after retailers stocked up on the company’s iconic red and white soup cans ahead of a price increase.

In addition, Campbell, which also makes Prego pasta sauce, V8 juice and Pepperidge Farm cookies, gave a profit forecast for the new fiscal year that was better than Wall Street expected.

Still, the company’s shares were only up slightly in noon trade, as gross margins fell under pressure from higher commodity costs and investors questioned how much Campbell needs to spend to promote products.

“We think that bulls on the name are focused mostly on the top line, which we understand, but the gross margin should not be overlooked,” said JP Morgan analyst Ken Goldman. “We believe Campbell remains a challenged company, one for which [earnings] growth is expected to be very low versus the group average.”

Mr. Goldman has an “underweight” rating on the stock.

Read Full Article from Globe and Mail

- Posted: 2012-09-05 11:29:44

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