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Deere Trades higher After Major Q1 Earnings Beat

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Deere & Company (NYSE: DE) far exceeded the Street’s first-quarter expectations. The company's $1.63 bottom line beat $1.26 consensus estimates, while sales of $7.63 billion surpassed forecasts of $6.42 billion.

For the most part, investors liked what they saw. Shares traded up 7.1% Friday morning. But some diminished Deere's achievement.

Bank of America analyst Ross Gilardi attributed most of the bottom-line outperformance to taxes, which contributed 27 cents per share, and to operating profit, which came in 3% ahead of consensus.

He also expressed disappointment that earnings before interest and tax declined 60% in the Construction and Forestry segment while cost and freight margins came in 3.5 percentage points below Bank of America’s forecasts.

“The good news of the quarter is that Ag & Turf margins of 8.4% (BofA 6.2%) were up 110 basis points YoY on a 4% decline in sales, snapping a 6 quarter streak of down margins for that segment, boosted by 3% pricing and cost declines that more than offset a $78 million voluntary separation headwind,” Gilardi wrote in a report.

However, he anticipates a rough-enough performance in the near term to warrant an Underperform rating.

View more earnings on DE

“We were honestly a little surprised that Deere did not reduce Europe and South America given weak trends, though Deere did not acknowledge a soft start to the year in Brazil,” Gilardi wrote.

Bank of America maintained an Underperform rating on Deere with a $150 price target.

Deere's stock traded higher by 7.3% to $178 per share at time of publication.

Related Links:

Deere Trades Lower Despite Q4 Sales Beat, Forecasts Drop In Agriculture Sales

Wells Fargo Downgrades Deere And Caterpillar, Sees 'Likely Need To Cut Production Soon'

Latest Ratings for DE

Dec 2019

BMO Capital

Maintains

Outperform

Dec 2019

Citigroup

Maintains

Buy

Dec 2019

Bank of America

Downgrades

Neutral

Underperform

View More Analyst Ratings for DE
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

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