People aren't buying as much Campbell's Soup as they once did

People aren't buying as much Campbell's Soup as they once did

May 19th, 2017 by Associated Press in Business Around the Region

FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2014, file photo, cans of Campbell's soup are photographed in Washington. Campbell Soup reports earnings Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2016. (AP Photo/J. David Ake, File)

Photo by The Associated Press /Times Free Press.

NEW YORK (AP) — Campbell Soup Co.'s fiscal third-quarter profit fell on weaker demand and missed Wall Street expectations, dragging shares lower in premarket trading Friday.

The stock dipped $2.94, or 5.2 percent, to $54 before the start of regular trading.

The maker of canned soup, Pepperidge Farm Cookies and V8 juice reported a 4.9 percent drop in profit to $176 million, or 58 cents per share. Revenue fell 1 percent to $1.85 billion.

Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs, came to 59 cents per share, while the average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 64 cents per share. Four analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $1.87 billion in revenue.

"The industry, including Campbell, experienced significant consumption declines early in the calendar year. These industry trends coincided with weak consumer spending, which was at its lowest growth rate since 2009," said President and CEO Denise Morrison, in statement.

The Camden, New Jersey company's meals and beverages unit reported a 2 percent decline, while its fresh foods unit saw a 6 percent decline. The global biscuits and snacks unit reported a 2 percent increase, but it was not enough to offset the overall decline in sales

Campbell expects full-year earnings in the range of $3.04 to $3.09 per share.

Campbell shares have decreased nearly 6 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index has risen almost 6 percent. The stock has dropped 10 percent in the last 12 months.