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Food Maker Cargill Profits Tumble

October 20, 1998

MINNETONKA, Minn. (AP) _ Earnings at food maker Cargill Inc. went into a freefall in the latest quarter, plummeting 957 percent due to trading losses in Russia and other turbulent markets.

Cargill, one of the world’s largest privately owned companies, earned $4 million in the quarter ended Aug. 31, compared with $93 million in the same period last year. The company did not release revenue figures.

Weakened demand for agricultural and food products in Asia and other emerging markets depressed commodity prices and contributed to the decline. Cargill sells, processes and distributes agricultural, food, financial and industrial products.

``As a global company, Cargill is not immune from the financial turmoil that has engulfed much of the world,″ said Robert Lumpkins, vice chairman and chief financial officer.

Despite the instability in world markets, several of Cargill’s commodity trading and processing businesses performed well, Lumpkins said.

``These are tough times for global companies, but Cargill’s core businesses and geographic reach continued to be a source of strength,″ he said.

Cargill, based in Minnetonka, has about 80,600 employees in more than 1,000 locations in 65 countries.

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