Corn Products Int'l profits dip in Q1

Corn Products Int'l profits dip in Q1

First quarter 2012 adjusted EPS declined from a record $1.28 billion in 2011 to $1.26 billion.

Corn Products International, Inc., a leading global provider of ingredient solutions to diversified industries, reported results for the first quarter 2012.

"We are quite pleased with the first quarter, which was the second highest quarterly adjusted EPS in the Company's history. As expected, we saw a slight decline in adjusted earnings per share in the first quarter as we lapped a very strong year-ago period which was driven by favorable input costs," said Ilene Gordon, chairman, president and chief executive officer. "Underlying our good performance is volume improvement as well as appropriate price increases to cover higher raw material costs. Our overall business fundamentals remain favorable.

"We continue to have a positive outlook for 2012 and expect sales and adjusted EPS improvement compared to 2011. We maintain our view that the year will be somewhat back-end loaded, in contrast to 2011 which was front-end loaded. Beyond that, we are excited about the prospect of our intended name change to Ingredion, which better reflects our portfolio and business model," Gordon added.

Earnings per share (EPS)
First quarter diluted EPS fell 39 percent to $1.21 compared to $1.97 last year. The first quarter of 2012 included $0.02 of business integration costs and $0.03 of restructuring charges. The first quarter of 2011 included a $0.75 per share gain from a NAFTA settlement with the government of Mexico partially offset by $0.06 of integration costs. Excluding these items, adjusted EPS declined 2 percent from $1.28 to $1.26 in the quarter.

Financial highlights
· During the first quarter 2012, net financing costs were $20 million versus $27 million in the year-ago period. The decrease primarily reflects a reduction in foreign currency transaction losses as well as lower borrowing rates and an increase in interest income.
· The effective tax rate as reported was 32.4 percent for the first quarter of 2012 and 22.6 percent in 2011. The difference is primarily due to the favorable impact of the tax-free NAFTA settlement in the first quarter of 2011.
· At March 31, 2012, total debt and cash and cash equivalents were $1.92 billion and $335 million, respectively, versus $1.95 billion and $401 million, respectively, at December 31, 2011.
· For the first quarter 2012, cash flow from operations was $29 million compared to $22 million in the year-ago period.
· Capital expenditures, net of disposals, were $59 million in the first quarter 2012 compared to $33 million in the same period of 2011.

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