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PIONEER HI-BRED INTERNATIONAL PROJECTS EARNINGS

 PIONEER HI-BRED INTERNATIONAL PROJECTS EARNINGS
 DES MOINES, Iowa, Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Officials of Pioneer Hi-


Bred International, Inc., (NASDAQ: PHYB) the Des Moines-based genetic supply firm, said today that earnings for fiscal 1992, ended Aug. 31, are likely to exceed securities analysts' current estimates by a significant margin.
 The consensus estimate stands at about $1.57 per share. While there may be last minute adjustments between now and the formal announcement scheduled for Oct. 23, the company believes that earnings could top that figure by as much as five percent.
 In fiscal 1991, Pioneer earned $1.15 per share, restated to reflect a three-for-one stock split effected in July.
 Jerry Chicoine, Pioneer senior vice president and chief financial officer, attributed the earnings increase in 1992 largely to sharply higher sales of the company's seed corn in North America. He noted that corn acreage rose four percent over 1991, offering a larger seed market. In addition, corn growers purchased a larger percentage of their seed corn from Pioneer, increasing the company's market share by about 2.7 points.
 Pioneer operations outside North America continued to show increases in contributions in 1992. "Earlier, we were thinking that the 1992 results would fall behind those of last year," Chicoine commented, "but now we're looking at a notable improvement."
 Despite a cool summer which delayed crop maturity, Chicoine expects the company's seed yields to adequately cover expected demand in 1993. "We still face some freeze risk with our seed corn crops in North America," he said. "However, our production is spread widely enough that it would take a widespread, hard freeze to harm us significantly."
 Chicoine estimated that something like 65 percent of the company's seed corn is harvested. "In another 10 to 12 days, we should have substantially all of the crop out of the fields, given reasonable weather," he continued.
 The recently announced government feed grains program will reduce the amount of acres planted to corn in 1993. The amount of the reduction is difficult to predict accurately. But he pointed out that if North American corn acres are reduced by five million in 1993, Pioneer could still maintain 1992 unit volume with a two-point gain in market share.
 "Early results of on-farm comparisons show that Pioneer hybrids continue to hold a substantial advantage over competing products," Chicoine said. "With that kind of performance, a 2 point market share gain is well within the realm of possibility, especially when one considers the 2.7 gain in 1992."
 He noted that a number of analysts were looking at earnings of $1.75 per share for 1993. "We didn't argue with that figure several months ago and we have no reason to argue with it now. We are optimistic that 1993 will be another successful year for Pioneer," Chicoine concluded.
 -0- 10/7/92
 /CONTACT: James Ansorge of Pioneer, 515-245-3578/
 (PHYB) CO: Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc. ST: Iowa IN: SU: ERP


LD -- NY059 -- 7622 10/07/92 17:29 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 7, 1992
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