Philip Morris's Stock Rises Just Briefly After New Profit Outlook Appears Like An Increase

By Tomi KilgoreMarketsMarketWatch Pulse

Shares of Philip Morris International Inc. got just a brief boost in afternoon trade Wednesday, after the tobacco company provided a new 2017 "currency only" profit outlook. The company said it now expects 2017 earnings per share of $4.80 to $4.95 at prevailing exchange rates, compared with the guidance of $4.70 to $4.85 it provided in its fourth-quarter report released on three weeks ago. Although the company said it raised its EPS guidance "for currency only," the new outlook excludes an unfavorable currency impact of 8 cents a share, compared with an unfavorable currency impact of 18 cents a share for the previous outlook. The stock was down about 0.3%, then jumped to a gain of as much as 0.3% after the new profit outlook was released, before pulling back to a decline of 0.1% in recent trade. Philip Morris's stock has gained 13% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has climbed 21%.

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