Dole Expects Earnings to Miss Estimates

Times Staff and Wire Reports

Dole Food Co. said it expects fourth-quarter earnings to miss forecasts and that it will take a $50-million charge. Shares of the Westlake Village company, the world's largest producer of fresh fruits and vegetables, fell $2.875 to close at $32.875 on the New York Stock Exchange. Dole said it expects earnings to double from the year-ago profit from continuing operations of $5.82 million, or 9 cents a share. That would be far less than the average estimate of 37 cents from analysts. The company also said it will shrink its money-losing dried fruit and nut business. Dole said the move will remove sizable losses associated with the business and reduce its working capital.

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