Analysts look for rising profits from Procter & Gamble (PG)

P&G (PG) earnings due out Wednesday

CINCINNATI - Procter & Gamble Co. is expected to report more robust profits compared to a year ago, when third-quarter earnings are released Wednesday morning.

Cincinnati-based P&G, maker of Tide detergent, Pampers diapers and Gillette blades and razors, is expected to report rising market share in the U.S. A $10 billion restructuring program has fueled new product launches, price cuts and promotions.

Analysts surveyed by Thompson Reuters expect P&G to report net income of $2.79 billion, or 96 cents per share, for its fiscal third quarter ended March 31. That would be an increase from the same period a year ago, when P&G reported a $2.41 billion profit, or 94 cents per share.

Sales are predicted to reach $20.79 billion for the quarter, a 2.7 percent increase over last year.

Analysts are expected to quiz P&G management on its outlook for future sales and earnings growth. They may ask questions about how P&G's $10 billion restructuring, which resulted in 5,850 job cuts, are impacting operations.

"I'm curious about how the internal change is going, what they think they're accomplishing," BMO Capital Markets analyst Connie Maneaty said. "Secondly, I'm interested in their outlook for sales growth. It would be nice to hear that it's stable to rising."

Matt McCormick, portfolio manager at downtown-based Bahl & Gaynor, said P&G already addressed its growth prospects by announcing a 7 percent dividend increase April 15.

"You can't fake a dividend payment," McCormick said. "That is a clear indication of future earnings power."

P&G shares have been on the rise lately, repeatedly climbing to all-time highs in recent weeks. Shares rose nearly one percent Tuesday reaching $82.15 at mid-morning.

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