Shares of Deere & Co. surged 3.7% toward a seven-month high in premarket trading Wednesday, after the agriculture, construction and forestry equipment maker reported fiscal fourth-quarter sales that were well above expectations, and provided an upbeat full-year outlook, citing positive farm fundamentals and fleet dynamics and increased investment in infrastructure. Net income rose to $2.25 billion, or $7.44 a share, from $1.28 billion, or $4.12 a share, in the year-ago period. That beat the FactSet consensus for earnings per share of $7.11. Sales grew 37.2% to $15.54 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $13.44 billion, with all business segments beating expectations. Operating margin also improved for all segments. For fiscal 2023, the company expects production and precision agriculture sales to be up 15% to 20% from a year ago, while the FactSet sales consensus of $24.96 billion implies 13.4% growth. The stock has rallied 21.5% year to date, while the S&P 500 has dropped 16.0%.
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