News Releases May 22, 2020
Focused on Safe Operations, Deere Reports Second Quarter Net Income of $665.8 Million
- Safeguarding employees helps keep operations running, customers served during pandemic.
- Digital tools provide unique customer experience in challenging conditions.
- Full year net income forecast to be $1.6 billion to $2 billion, reflecting market uncertainties.
MOLINE, Illinois (May 22, 2020) — Deere & Company reported net income of $665.8 million for the second quarter ended May 3, 2020, or $2.11 per share, compared with net income of $1.135 billion, or $3.52 per share, for the quarter ended April 28, 2019. For the first six months of the year, net income attributable to Deere & Company was $1.182 billion, or $3.73 per share, compared with $1.633 billion, or $5.07 per share, for the same period last year.
Worldwide net sales and revenues decreased 18 percent, to $9.253 billion, for the second quarter of 2020 and decreased 13 percent, to $16.884 billion, for six months. Net sales of the equipment operations were $8.224 billion for the quarter and $14.754 billion for six months, compared with $10.273 billion and $17.214 billion last year.
"John Deere's foremost priority in confronting the coronavirus crisis has been to safeguard the health and well-being of employees while fulfilling its obligation as an essential business serving customers throughout the world," said John C. May, chairman and chief executive officer. "We've had good success in these areas thanks to the proactive measures we have taken to keep employees safe and our production facilities and parts distribution centers operational. At the same time, the company has reached out to our local communities to help those in need as a result of the pandemic. Deere and its employees have provided generous support to area food banks and other organizations offering assistance during this difficult time."
COVID-19 Response and Actions
The company is executing its plan to address the impact of COVID-19 through a number of key actions, as described below:
Safeguarding and Supporting Employees. Deere's first priority is the health, safety, and overall welfare of our employees. Protecting the workforce is essential for the company to deliver on its commitment to customers and fulfill its role as an essential business. Deere has proactively implemented health and safety measures at its operations around the world. These measures include employee health screening, additional personal protective equipment, social distancing guidelines, enhanced cleaning and sanitation efforts, and staggered production schedules.
Supporting Dealers and Customers. Because maintaining customer uptime is critical to delivering value to our customers, Deere continues to produce and ship machinery and repair parts to meet demand. Responding to this demand in the face of the pandemic has been a challenge as a result of various regulatory, economic, and other barriers that have affected production facilities and the supply chain. The company is represented by a world-class dealer channel that has continued operating throughout the crisis. Leveraging digital tools and connected-support abilities has allowed our dealers to remotely service customer machines and maintain appropriate social distancing protocols. Measures to ensure continuity of operations have helped customers continue the essential work of promoting food security and providing critical infrastructure. Additionally, John Deere Financial has provided continuous financing through the duration of any COVID-19 disruptions.
Serving Communities. In addition, Deere and its employees have taken actions to strengthen social safety nets in communities where the company operates throughout the world. These include making donations of face shields and coverings to health-care workers and first responders and contributing to local food banks and Red Cross chapters.
Managing Liquidity & Financial Position. Significant actions also have been taken to strengthen the company's financial position. These include raising about $4.5 billion in medium- to long-term funding, aggressively reducing operating expenses, decreasing capital spending budgets, and other actions to preserve liquidity.
Company Outlook & Summary
Net income attributable to Deere & Company is forecast to be in a range of $1.6 billion to $2 billion for the full year. However, many uncertainties remain regarding the effects of the COVID-19 global pandemic that could negatively affect the company's results and financial position in the future.
"I would like to express my appreciation to the thousands of John Deere employees, dealers and suppliers who have worked tirelessly to keep our operations safe and our customers up and running during this challenging period," May said. "Deere is well-known for developing strong relationships with a range of stakeholders, which prove extremely valuable in difficult times. We remain committed to offering a full suite of advanced digital tools that give our customers unique capabilities and help them do their work more efficiently and profitably. As a result, we're confident the company will successfully manage the pandemic's effects and strengthen its position serving customers in the future."
Additional financial information is available in the PDF version of this release.
Safe Harbor Statement
Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements under "Company Outlook & Summary," "Market Conditions & Outlook," and other forward-looking statements herein that relate to future events, expectations, and trends involve factors that are subject to change, and risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. Some of these risks and uncertainties could affect particular lines of business, while others could affect all of the company's businesses.
The company's agricultural equipment business is subject to a number of uncertainties including the factors that affect farmers' confidence and financial condition. These factors include demand for agricultural products, world grain stocks, weather conditions, soil conditions, harvest yields, prices for commodities and livestock, crop and livestock production expenses, availability of transport for crops, trade restrictions and tariffs (e.g., China), global trade agreements (e.g., the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement), the level of farm product exports (including concerns about genetically modified organisms), the growth and sustainability of non-food uses for some crops (including ethanol and biodiesel production), real estate values, available acreage for farming, the land ownership policies of governments, changes in government farm programs and policies, international reaction to such programs, changes in and effects of crop insurance programs, changes in environmental regulations and their impact on farming practices, animal diseases (e.g., African swine fever) and their effects on poultry, beef and pork consumption and prices and on livestock feed demand, and crop pests and diseases and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the agricultural industry including demand for, and production and exports of, agricultural products, and commodity prices.
Factors affecting the outlook for the company's turf and utility equipment include consumer confidence, weather conditions, customer profitability, labor supply, consumer borrowing patterns, consumer purchasing preferences, housing starts and supply, infrastructure investment, spending by municipalities and golf courses, and consumable input costs. Many of these factors have been and may continue to be impacted by the global economic downturn resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and responses to the pandemic taken by governments and other authorities.
Consumer spending patterns, real estate and housing prices, the number of housing starts, interest rates and the levels of public and non-residential construction are important to sales and results of the company's construction and forestry equipment. Prices for pulp, paper, lumber and structural panels are important to sales of forestry equipment. Many of these factors affecting the outlook for the company's construction and forestry equipment have been and may continue to be impacted by the global economic downturn resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and responses to the pandemic taken by governments and other authorities.
All of the company's businesses and its results are affected by general economic conditions in the global markets and industries in which the company operates; customer confidence in general economic conditions; government spending and taxing; foreign currency exchange rates and their volatility, especially fluctuations in the value of the U.S. dollar; interest rates (including the availability of IBOR reference rates); inflation and deflation rates; changes in weather patterns; the political and social stability of the global markets in which the company operates; the effects of, or response to, terrorism and security threats; wars and other conflicts; natural disasters; and the spread of major epidemics (including the COVID-19 pandemic) and government and industry responses to epidemics such as travel restrictions and extended shut down of businesses.
Uncertainties related to the magnitude and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic may significantly adversely affect the company's business and outlook. These uncertainties include: prolonged reduction or closure of the company's operations, or a delayed recovery in our operations; additional closures as mandated or otherwise made necessary by governmental authorities; disruptions in the supply chain and a prolonged delay in resumption of operations by one or more key suppliers, or the failure of any key suppliers; the company's ability to meet commitments to customers on a timely basis as a result of increased costs and supply challenges; the ability to receive goods on a timely basis and at anticipated costs; increased logistics costs; delays in the company's strategic initiatives as a result of reduced spending on research and development; additional operating costs at facilities that remain open due to remote working arrangements, adherence to social distancing guidelines and other COVID-19-related challenges; absence of employees due to illness; the impact of the pandemic on the company's customers and dealers, and their delays in their plans to invest in new equipment; requests by the company's customers or dealers for payment deferrals and contract modifications; the impact of disruptions in the global capital markets and/or continued declines in the company's financial performance, outlook or credit ratings, which could impact the company's ability to obtain funding in the future; and the impact of the pandemic on demand for our products and services as discussed above. It is unclear when an economic recovery could occur and what a recovery may look like. All of these factors could materially and adversely affect our business, liquidity, results of operations and financial position.
Significant changes in market liquidity conditions, changes in the company's credit ratings and any failure to comply with financial covenants in credit agreements could impact access to funding and funding costs, which could reduce the company's earnings and cash flows. Financial market conditions could also negatively impact customer access to capital for purchases of the company's products and customer confidence and purchase decisions, borrowing and repayment practices, and the number and size of customer loan delinquencies and defaults. A debt crisis, in Europe or elsewhere, could negatively impact currencies, global financial markets, social and political stability, funding sources and costs, asset and obligation values, customers, suppliers, demand for equipment, and company operations and results. The company's investment management activities could be impaired by changes in the equity, bond and other financial markets, which would negatively affect earnings.
The withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union and the perceptions as to the impact of the withdrawal may adversely affect business activity, political stability and economic conditions in the United Kingdom, the European Union and elsewhere. The economic conditions and outlook could be further adversely affected by (i) uncertainty regarding any new or modified trade arrangements between the United Kingdom and the European Union and/or other countries, (ii) the risk that one or more other European Union countries could come under increasing pressure to leave the European Union, or (iii) the risk that the euro as the single currency of the Eurozone could cease to exist. Any of these developments, or the perception that any of these developments are likely to occur, could affect economic growth or business activity in the United Kingdom or the European Union, and could result in the relocation of businesses, cause business interruptions, lead to economic recession or depression, and impact the stability of the financial markets, availability of credit, currency exchange rates, interest rates, financial institutions, and political, financial and monetary systems. Any of these developments could affect our businesses, liquidity, results of operations and financial position.
Additional factors that could materially affect the company's operations, access to capital, expenses and results include changes in, uncertainty surrounding and the impact of governmental trade, banking, monetary and fiscal policies, including financial regulatory reform and its effects on the consumer finance industry, derivatives, funding costs and other areas, and governmental programs, policies, tariffs and sanctions in particular jurisdictions or for the benefit of certain industries or sectors; retaliatory actions to such changes in trade, banking, monetary and fiscal policies; actions by central banks; actions by financial and securities regulators; actions by environmental, health and safety regulatory agencies, including those related to engine emissions, carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions, noise and the effects of climate change; changes to GPS radio frequency bands or their permitted uses; changes in labor and immigration regulations; changes to accounting standards; changes in tax rates, estimates, laws and regulations and company actions related thereto; changes to and compliance with privacy regulations; compliance with U.S. and foreign laws when expanding to new markets and otherwise; and actions by other regulatory bodies.
Other factors that could materially affect results include production, design and technological innovations and difficulties, including capacity and supply constraints and prices; the loss of or challenges to intellectual property rights whether through theft, infringement, counterfeiting or otherwise; the availability and prices of strategically sourced materials, components and whole goods; delays or disruptions in the company's supply chain or the loss of liquidity by suppliers; disruptions of infrastructures that support communications, operations or distribution; the failure of suppliers or the company to comply with laws, regulations and company policy pertaining to employment, human rights, health, safety, the environment, anti-corruption, privacy and data protection and other ethical business practices; events that damage the company's reputation or brand; significant investigations, claims, lawsuits or other legal proceedings; start-up of new plants and products; the success of new product initiatives; changes in customer product preferences and sales mix; gaps or limitations in rural broadband coverage, capacity and speed needed to support technology solutions; oil and energy prices, supplies and volatility; the availability and cost of freight; actions of competitors in the various industries in which the company competes, particularly price discounting; dealer practices especially as to levels of new and used field inventories; changes in demand and pricing for used equipment and resulting impacts on lease residual values; labor relations and contracts; changes in the ability to attract, train and retain qualified personnel; acquisitions and divestitures of businesses; greater than anticipated transaction costs; the integration of new businesses; the failure or delay in closing or realizing anticipated benefits of acquisitions, joint ventures or divestitures; the implementation of organizational changes; the failure to realize anticipated savings or benefits of cost reduction, productivity, or efficiency efforts; difficulties related to the conversion and implementation of enterprise resource planning systems; security breaches, cybersecurity attacks, technology failures and other disruptions to the company's and suppliers' information technology infrastructure; changes in company declared dividends and common stock issuances and repurchases; changes in the level and funding of employee retirement benefits; changes in market values of investment assets, compensation, retirement, discount and mortality rates which impact retirement benefit costs; and significant changes in health care costs.
The liquidity and ongoing profitability of John Deere Capital Corporation and other credit subsidiaries depend largely on timely access to capital in order to meet future cash flow requirements, and to fund operations, costs, and purchases of the company's products. If general economic conditions deteriorate or capital markets become more volatile, including as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, funding could be unavailable or insufficient. Additionally, customer confidence levels may result in declines in credit applications and increases in delinquencies and default rates, which could materially impact write-offs and provisions for credit losses.
The company's outlook is based upon assumptions relating to the factors described above, which are sometimes based upon estimates and data prepared by government agencies. Such estimates and data are often revised. The company, except as required by law, undertakes no obligation to update or revise its outlook, whether as a result of new developments or otherwise. Further information concerning the company and its businesses, including factors that could materially affect the company's financial results, is included in the company's other filings with the SEC (including, but not limited to, the factors discussed in Item 1A. Risk Factors of the company's most recent annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q).
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