Kimberly-Clark has reported better-than-expected growth for its fiscal second quarter, but maintained a cautious outlook for the full year, citing the strength of the US dollar.
For the quarter, the group saw net profit grow by 5.6% to $526m ($1.36 per share), but excluding one-off items, profit rose to $1.41 a share. Sales were roughly flat at $5.27bn, but they grew 3% on an underlying basis.
In North America, sales at the personal care segment dropped by 3%, as declines for own label and feminine care products offset sales of Depend adult incontinence products and Huggies baby wipes. International sales rose a strong 9%.
Kimberly-Clark said it still expects full-year earnings per share of $5.60 to $5.75, excluding items, which includes expectations of a stronger US dollar (which would hurt its international earnings).
The company said it should be able to cut more costs this year than it previously expected - $300m- to $350m, compared to forecasts of $250m-$300m. However, it noted that if current currency rates hold, it will be less likely to post profits at the upper end of its forecast.