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Crown Holdings to cut 300 jobs, lowers outlook

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Crown Holdings Inc. on Tuesday lowered its third-quarter earnings forecast due to weaker demand and said it plans to cut 300 jobs in Europe.

Shares of the packaging company fell nearly 5 percent, to $41.31, after-hours trading.

Crown Holdings, based in Philadelphia, said that demand in its European food can and North American beverage can markets have been weaker than expected.

As a result, it expects to earn between $1.05 and $1.10 per share for the quarter, excluding one-time items. That is down from its prior forecast of $1.15 to $1.25 per share. Analysts polled by FactSet, on average, were anticipating earnings of $1.21 per share for the July-September period.

Crown Holdings also said that it expects to take a charge of $29 million after taxes, or 21 cents per share, in the quarter for costs related to the job cuts. The cuts will be focused in its European food, aerosol and specialty packaging business, affecting 300 employees. That is about 1 percent of its roughly 22,000 employees globally. The company expects to save $25 million annually when the job cuts are complete.

Crown Holdings is expects to report its full third-quarter results on Oct. 16.

The company's stock had added 7 cents to close regular trading at $43.47. Shares have gained 18 percent this year.