The following is a summary of business results for each of the company’s reportable segments, comparing third quarter 2012 with third quarter 2011, for sales and pre-tax operating income PTOI (loss), excluding significant items. References to price are on a U.S. dollar basis, including the impact of currency.
Agriculture – Sales of $1.4 billion were up 4% on 7% higher volume partially offset by 3% lower prices inclusive of a 10% currency headwind. For Pioneer seed, volume growth reflects a strong start to the Southern Hemisphere planting season. Higher local prices for both corn and soybeans were partially offset by the impact of unfavorable currency. Crop Protection sales growth was underpinned by strong demand for insect control products and fungicides; while higher local prices across all market segments were more than offset by unfavorable currency. PTOI seasonal loss was ($85) million versus ($69) million in the prior year as strong sales were more than offset by unfavorable currency, higher input costs in seeds and higher investments in commercial and R&D activities to support growth.
Electronics & Communications – Sales of $607 million were down 28% on 20% lower volume and 8% lower prices, primarily pass-through of lower metals prices. Volume declined in photovoltaic materials, partially offset by continued strong demand for materials in smart phones and tablets. PTOI of $40 million declined $59 million from lower volume.
Industrial Biosciences – Sales of $292 million were flat compared to prior year as higher volume was offset by lower prices, primarily related to unfavorable currency. Volume growth reflects strong biomaterial sales into carpeting, as well as continued growth in animal nutrition and food enzymes. PTOI of $42 million was up $8 million on higher volume and the realization of cost synergies related to the integration of the Danisco enzyme business.
Nutrition & Health – Sales of $876 million were up 4% on higher volume, reflecting strong demand for specialty food ingredients and Solae soy specialties. Higher local prices were offset by unfavorable currency. PTOI of $87 million was up $32 million on higher local selling prices, higher volume and the realization of cost synergies related to the integration of the Danisco specialty food ingredients business.
Performance Chemicals – Sales of $1.7 billion were down 19%, with 18% lower volume and 1% lower prices against a quarter with record titanium dioxide volume. Sales declined on lower demand for titanium dioxide and fluoropolymers. Volumes were pressured by softness in Europe and Asia Pacific primarily due to lower infrastructure spend and weak construction markets. PTOI of $372 million decreased $221 million on lower volume.
Performance Materials – Sales of $1.6 billion were down 8%, with 7% lower prices and a 3% reduction from a portfolio change, partially offset by 2% higher volume. Lower prices reflect unfavorable currency and mix. Stable packaging markets and continued strong demand in automotive were partially offset by softness in the industrial and electronics markets. PTOI of $306 million increased $75 million due to lower feedstock costs and higher volume, partially offset by unfavorable currency.
Safety & Protection – Sales of $934 million were down 7%, with 4% lower prices, primarily due to unfavorable currency, and 3% lower volume. Volume declined due to stalled infrastructure projects in China, weaker industrial conditions in Europe and lower US public sector demand. Trends in US housing are encouraging. PTOI of $103 million decreased $15 million on weaker mix and unfavorable currency.
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