E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD), one of the largest chemical producers in the United States, reported its fourth quarter earnings today. In the last three months, the company’s earnings fell 70 percent as higher costs ate into its margins, and the sales remained almost flat. The company reported a net profit of $111 million or 12 cents per share, down 70 percent from $373 million or 40 cents per share in the same period a year ago.


The company recorded $135 million in customer claim charges and $66 million of restructuring charges, compared to the previous fourth quarter of $100 million and $17 million respectively. Net sales were almost flat at $7.33 billion. E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD) said that volume sales were up 3 percent, but they were offset by 2 percent currency impact and 1 percent due to portfolio charges. For the full-year, 2012, earnings declined 6 percent to $3.33.

Analysts polled by Thompson Reuters were expecting $7.26 in revenues and 7 cents a share on earnings. Segment-wise, sales in the materials sector fell 5.2 percent, chemicals unit sales were down 15 percent, but the agricultural unit sales surged 18 percent. Sales in Asia Pacific and North America regions were flat, while sales in Latin America jumped 10 percent, and sales in Europe, Middle East and Africa fell 8 percent.

For 2013, the company forecasts $3.85-$4.05 in earnings on revenues of about $36 billion. E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD) said it will eliminate about 1,500 employees worldwide by the next year.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)’s Profits Soar Ten Times

The New Brunswick, N.J.-based producer of consumer health products, prescription drugs and medical devices announced a bigger fourth quarter earnings that easily beat analysts’ estimates. The company reported a profit of $2.57 billion or 91 cents a share, compared to $218 million or 8 cents a share in the same period a year ago.

The company lost $800 million in one-time litigation and acquisition charges. Excluding those charges, earnings stood at $3.38 billion or $1.19 per share. J&J reported revenues of $17.56 billion for the latest quarter. Sales of consumer health products were hurt by continued manufacturing quality problems, which declined 0.4 percent worldwide to $3.65 billion.

The largest business of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), medical devices and diagnostics reported 13.7 percent increase in sales to $7.38 billion. Sales of prescription drugs rose 7.1 percent to $6.53 billion.