Universal Corp. boosts profit on weakening dollar

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Tobacco leaf processor Universal Corp. increased its net income 22 percent in the first three quarters of its fiscal year as its currency costs fell.

Universal Corp. reported a $142 million profit for the nine months ended Dec. 31, compared with $116 million during the same period the year before.

The previous year’s earnings included $45 million in currency-related costs because of the strengthening dollar. The current year included a $42 million reduction in those costs.

The Richmond company saw a 5 percent decline in revenues to $662 million during the first nine months, partly because of shipment delays from Africa and North America.

In the third quarter, profit was down 16 percent to $45.7 million, compared with $53.1 million the year before.

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