Earnings Report: Bayer AG

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Bayer AG

Bayer AG said net profit rose 75 percent in the second quarter thanks to lower one-time charges and strong performances by its pharmaceuticals and crop science divisions. But falling earnings at its Robinson-based material science division led the German company to say it would be harder to achieve its earnings goals for the year. Operating earnings for the material science division -- which makes plastics and chemicals -- fell 28.5 percent, and sales posted a 2.7 percent decline.

Overall net profit for Bayer AG came in at 841 million euros ($1.1 billion), up from 481 million euros a year ago when the company had 611 million euros in one-time charges, mostly for U.S. lawsuits over its birth control pill. Revenues rose 1.9 percent to 10.36 billion euros.

Bayer's total sales in North America in the second quarter 2013 were 2,623 million euros ($3,436 million), down 0.1 percent compared to the second quarter 2012.

"It remains to be seen to what extent the unexpectedly weak development at material science will be offset by our improved performance in the life sciences," which includes pharmaceuticals and farm chemicals, CEO Marijn Dekkers said. He discounted speculation from Andrew Baum, an analyst at Citigroup Inc. in London, that the division will be sold. "MaterialScience is a more cyclical business, where we know you can have very, very good years but then weaker years as a result of economic cyclicality," Mr. Dekkers said. "That doesn't make it a bad business, it just makes it a different business than the other two."

Universal Stainless & Alloy Products

Universal Stainless & Alloy Products reported sharply lower second quarter results that were below Wall Street estimates.

Net income totalled $478,000, or 6 cents per share, vs. earnings of $4.5 million, or 62 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter.

The Bridgeville specialty steels producer said it would have lost money for the quarter were it not for a tax-related gain that added 11 cents per share to its bottom line.

Sales fell 37 percent to $42.9 million while shipments declined 36 percent. Analysts were expecting net income of 11 cents per share on sales of $51.8 million.

Black Box

Lawrenceville-based digital communications company Black Box Corp. announced first quarter net income of $6.9 million, or 43 cents per share, up from $5.9 million and 34 cents per share the same period last year.

Company revenues for the quarter were $246.9 million, down slightly from $247.8 million the same period last year.

The company repurchased $6.8 million in common stock and paid $1.3 million in dividends to shareholders during the period.

Comcast

Comcast reported net income in the three months through June climbed 29 percent to $1.73 billion, or 65 cents a share, from $1.35 billion, or 50 cents, a year earlier. Sales rose 7 percent to $16.3 billion. The Philadelphia-based company said NBCUniversal revenue rose 8.9 percent to $6 billion.

Comcast acquired the remainder of NBCUniversal from General Electric Co. for $16.7 billion in March. Revenue from its Universal Pictures studio improved 13 percent to $1.39 billion. Theme park sales rose 1.3 percent to $546 million.

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