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Ball beats Wall Street estimates as Russian divestment pushes down volume

WESTMINSTER — Ball Corp. (NYSE: BALL), a Westminster-based metal-packaging manufacturer with a major aerospace division, saw its stock price take flight on Thursday after an earnings report bested analysts expectations despite a year-over-year bottomline contraction.

Ball’s first-quarter 2023 comparable net earnings were $217 million, or 69 cents per diluted share, compared with $252 million, or 77 cents per diluted share in 2022. 

“Year-over-year financial results reflect the impact of the Russian aluminum beverage can business sale completed in the third quarter of 2022,” Ball said in its quarterly report.

The Westminster company’s performance in the most-recent quarter far exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate for net earnings of 49 cents. 

Total sales were nearly $3.49 million in the first quarter of 2023, down 6.1% from the year-ago quarter.

“We delivered strong first quarter results amid tough year-over-year comparisons driven largely by 2022 business divestments,” Ball CEO Daniel Fisher said in a prepared statement. “Notable inflationary cost recovery, benefits of cost-out actions as well as improved operational efficiencies and aerospace program execution will significantly improve full-year results and more than offset higher interest expense and tepid first-half volume trends driven by varying global macroeconomic conditions impacting consumer demand.”

Ball’s stock finished trading Thursday at $59.25, up 13.38%.

Source: BizWest