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DuPont Plans for Layoffs as it Cuts Outlook

October 23, 2012- DuPont posted a drop of 98% in earnings for the third quarter as the U.S. manufacturer of a range of products saw revenue drop and was hit back by one-time charges that were very large. On the news, DuPont’s stock dropped to $48 or about 3.5% as the quarterly results did not meet expectations set by Wall Street.

DuPont also slashed its adjusted earnings for the full years to $3.25 to $3.30 per share from its forecast in July that had earnings between the bottom end of its previous quarter of $4.20 to $4.40 per share. The company also announced that it had started a restructuring plan in order to enhance competitiveness, accelerate growth and increased productivity. Included in that plan is the cutting of more than 1,500 jobs globally during the next year to 18 months.

Ellen Kullman, the CEO of DuPont said on Tuesday that demand was weaker than had been expected in the photovoltaic and titanium dioxide markets and that contributed to earnings decline from third quarter earnings of last year, which were record earnings for a third quarter.

Results at DuPont suffered lately due to lower volume as well as currency headwinds. Sales in the agricultural segment, which are very key to the company’s bottom line, has seen improvements recently.

Kullman took over in 2009 as the CEO of DuPont and has accelerated the company’s transformation from being a chemical producer. The company on Tuesday reported that is performance materials sector had posted a decrease of 7.5% in sales, while the performance chemicals sector saw sales fall by 19%. Sales however, in the agricultural sector increased by 4%.

DuPont reported that its income for the quarter was $10 million or one cent per share, versus last year’s same quarter of $452 million or close to 48 cents per share. One time charges of $242 million and $152 million hit the company’s earnings during the quarter.

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