Deere & Co.’s 3Q Profit Rises 23 Percent on Sales

Tue August 28, 2007 - National Edition

MOLINE, Ill. (AP) Agricultural equipment maker Deere & Co. said Aug. 15 its third quarter profit rose 23 percent on strong sales outside the United States and Canada.

For the quarter ended July 31, net income grew to $537.2 million, or $2.37 per share, from $436 million, or $1.85 per share in the prior year period.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial expected earnings of $1.99 per share for the quarter.

Net sales and revenue rose 6 percent to $6.63 billion from $6.27 billion in the third quarter of 2006. Analysts predicted revenue of $6.65 billion.

Sales alone rose 5 percent, mainly due to a 16 percent rise in agricultural equipment sales and a 15 percent improvement in commercial and consumer equipment sales. Equipment sales in the United States and Canada were down 5 percent for the quarter and off 4 percent for the year to date, while net sales outside the U.S. and Canada increased by 30 percent for the quarter.

Gains in those categories were offset by a 20 percent drop in sales of construction and forestry equipment.

The company said, in addition to improved sales, there was a slight rise in profit in the financial services division, due to growth in Deere’s credit portfolio.