Tobacco titan Philip Morris saw its share price leap over eight per cent yesterday after investors chose to ignore the impact of a strengthening dollar on first quarter earnings.
The seller of Marlboro recorded revenues of $6.6bn (£4.4bn) during the period, down 4.4 per cent on the year before, however, currency fluctuations shaved $939m off the final figure. Latin America and Canada proved the strongest market for Philip Morris which saw net revenues increase 14 per cent excluding currency, despite volumes sold slipping 1.2 per cent.
Global shipment volumes increased by 2.1 per cent to 199bn units, driven mainly by growth in the EU, notably France, Italy and Spain. Overall profit before tax fell 3.2 per cent during the period to $2.6bn, down from $2.7bn during the same period last year.
Despite the declines, chief executive Andre Calantzopoulos said the volume and market-share performance was “better than we originally forecast”.