Chemicals and industrial giant DuPont (NYSE:DD) was being clobbered Tuesday morning after reporting an enormous plunge in earnings, cutting full-year forecasts and announcing plans to lay off 1,500 workers.
Q3 earnings of $10 million were just 2% of the year-ago’s $452 million in profits, mostly thanks to charges of $242 million and $152 million for impairment and restructuring charges. Backing out the charges, earnings per share came to 44 cents, still well behind the previous year’s 69 cents per share and missing forecasts for 49 cents. Revenues also declined, falling 9% to $7.39 billion, which also was shy of estimates.
DuPont also cut its 2012 adjusted earnings forecasts from a range of $4.20-$4.40 per share to $3.25-$3.30 per share. Wall Street expects earnings of $3.93 per share.
The company blamed the drop in earnings to weaker-than-expected demand in some products. The firm’s performance-materials products saw sales slump 7.5% and its performance-chemicals group saw sales drop 19%. The agricultural segment rose 4%.
DuPont also announced that more than 1,500 employees will be laid off during the next 12 to 18 months in a restructuring effort.
DD shares were down roughly 9% around midday Tuesday.