Shares of Kraft Heinz Co.
surged 1.8% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the food and beverage company, with brands including Oscar Meyer, Kool-Aid and Velveeta, reported fourth-quarter results that topped expectations but provided a downbeat full-year outlook. The company swung to net income of $890 million, or 72 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, from a net loss of $257 million, or 21 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose to 85 cents from 79 cents and beat the FactSet consensus of 78 cents. Sales rose 10.0% to $7.38 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $7.26 billion, as a 15.2% jump in prices helped offset a 4.8% drop in volume and mix. Cost of sales increased 10.3% to $5.02 billion, as gross margin contracted to 32.0% from 32.2%. For 2023, the company expects adjusted EPS of $2.67 to $2.75, below the FactSet consensus of $2.77, and anticipates inflation in the “high single-digit” percentage range for the year. The stock has rallied 7.7% over the past three months through Tuesday while the S&P 500
has gained 3.6%.
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