Universal’s income stays steady after EU reverses fine

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Universal Corp.’s income for the second quarter of fiscal year 2011 was similar to net income recorded a year ago due to the reversal of a European Commission fine.

The Richmond-based tobacco company reported that net income was $51.8 million, or $1.78 per diluted share, in the second quarter, down 1 percent from net income of $52.5 million, or $1.77 per diluted share, in the second quarter of last year.

The European Commission fine, which was accrued during the fiscal year 2005 and related to the Spanish tobacco processing market, was cut in half based on a decision by the General Court of the European Union. The reversal added $7.4 million in pre-tax revenues in the second quarter, which offset restructuring charges and lower operating results from lower volumes, caused in part by shipping delays and lower average margins.

“Although our second fiscal quarter results were similar to last year’s performance, we continue to experience shipment delays, primarily in Africa, Asia, and Europe,” George C. Freeman III, chairman, president, and CEO of Universal Corp. said in a statement.

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