WASHINGTON, Aug. 8, 2014 -- Cargill Inc. said net earnings for its fiscal fourth quarter fell 12 percent from a year earlier, to $424 million. The company cited weaker economic conditions in some countries and the negative impact of a change in Venezuela’s effective currency exchange rates.

Full-year profits at Cargill, which will mark its 150th anniversary in 2015, fell to $1.87 billion from the previous year, when earnings nearly doubled as the company recovered from the effects of a severe U.S. drought in 2012. Cargill’s fiscal year ended May 31.

Here are some highlights from Cargill’s four business segments:

- Earnings rose significantly in Animal Nutrition & Protein in the fourth quarter and full year. Performance in animal protein was led by the beef business, which was boosted by good cattle feeding results in North America and brisk exports of Australian beef, among other things. U.S. pork operations rose on improved live production and processing efficiency, and steady demand.

- Food Ingredients & Applications earnings decreased in the fourth quarter and fiscal 2014 after four consecutive years of record performance

- Origination & Processing results were slightly below last year’s fourth quarter. Full-year earnings decreased moderately from fiscal 2013, reflecting in part the impact of China’s rejection of certain U.S. corn shipments, as reported in the third quarter. U.S. farm services continued to experience limited handling and storage opportunities stemming from the last year’s drought and higher costs related to railcar shortages.

In Industrial & Financial Services, earnings rose in global ocean transportation and the U.S.-based steelmaking joint venture, but segment results declined overall in both periods due to poor performance in energy.

The company doesn’t report earnings details from its different business segments.


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