Geest warns of loss after floods

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The Independent Online
BANANA importer Geest warned it would lose money in the second half after floods destroyed crops in the West Indies, writes Robert Cole.

City analysts cut their full year forecasts from pounds 20m to pounds 10m and the shares, which have already fallen from 380p this year, dropped another 31p to 189p, trading at their lowest level for seven years.

The warning came as Geest reported interim results significantly ahead of market estimates. Taxable profits increased from pounds 3m to pounds 17.9m and earnings per share grew from 3.7p to 14.9p.

The company said the advance was due to a more stable tariff environment.

Operating profits from bananas jumped from pounds 2m to pounds 15m and the food preparation side increased from pounds 3.3m to pounds 4.2m.