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Constellation Brands 2Q Beats Expectations

Thu, 10/03/2013 - 12:53pm

VICTOR, N.Y. (AP) — Constellation Brands' second-quarter net income surged, bolstered by a large gain related to Crown Imports and a lower-than-expected tax rate.

The wine, beer and liquor company's adjusted earnings topped Wall Street's view, and it lifted its full-year adjusted earnings outlook again.

The stock rose almost 3 percent in morning trading, briefly hitting an all-time high.

For the three months ended Aug. 31, Constellation earned $1.52 billion, or $7.74 per share. That compares with $124.6 million, or 67 cents per share, a year ago.

Constellation announced in June 2012 that it was buying the remaining 50 percent stake in Crown Imports LLC that it didn't already own from AB InBev for $1.85 billion. The company's latest quarter included a $1.6 billion gain tied to Crown Imports.

Removing the Crown Imports gain and other items, earnings were 96 cents per share compared with 71 cents per share in the prior-year period.

Analysts, on average, expected earnings of 88 cents per share, according to a FactSet poll.

Revenue excluding excise taxes increased to $1.46 billion from $698.5 million, helped by Crown Imports and the buyout of Grupo Modelo's U.S. beer business.

Wall Street called for $1.53 billion in revenue.

Constellation closed on its acquisition of the Grupo Modelo U.S, beer business in June. It purchased the business from Anheuser-Bush InBev for about $4.75 billion.

The Victor, N.Y., company now foresees 2014 adjusted earnings between $2.80 and $3.10 per share. Its prior guidance was for $2.60 to $2.90 per share, which was previously raised from $2.55 to $2.85 per share.

Analysts expect earnings of $2.83 per share.

Shares of Constellation Brands Inc. gained $1.64, or 2.8 percent, to $59.90 in morning trading after rising as high as $60.59 earlier in the session. FactSet said that is an all-time high.

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