Monsanto Co. reported fiscal third-quarter earnings that declined to $717 million, or $1.63 a share, from $1.14 billion, or $2.39 a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding non-recurring items, such as one-time restructuring expenses, adjusted earnings per share came to $2.17, below the FactSet consensus of $2.40. Revenue fell to $4.19 billion from $4.58 billion, below the FactSet consensus of $4.50 billion, with corn seed and traits revenue of $1.59 billion missing expectations of $1.66 billion, and agricultural productivity revenue of $982 million missing expectations of $1.12 billion. For fiscal 2016, the agriculture company said it expects adjusted EPS at the "low end" of the previously-provided guidance range of $4.40 to $5.10; the FactSet consensus is $4.64. Monsanto is currently entertaining a buyout bid from German rival Bayer AG . The stock, which fell 1.1% in premarket trade, has gained 2.6% year to date through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has slipped 0.4%.
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