Deere & Co. reported net income of $757 million for the fourth quarter of 2020, a slight dip compared to the third quarter, and $2.75 billion net income for all of 2020.
The Illinois-based manufacturing company famous for its tractors saw earnings per share rise to $2.39 a share in the last quarter of 2020 compared to $2.27 a share in Q4 2019. Full year results showed Deere made 9% less in 2020 than it did in 2019, when it earned $3.253 billion of net income.
The company’s equipment operations saw a loss in sales of only about 1% compared to 2019, and its sales in the agriculture and turf segment improved by 8% compared to 2019 due to price realization and higher shipment volumes. Its construction and forestry segment saw net sales fall 16%.
Back in August, the company said it would lay off an unspecified number of employees in voluntary buyouts.
Deere CEO John C. May’s comments suggested optimism for continued growth in 2021, saying the company delivered a “solid year” despite the COVID-19 outbreak.
Thanks to Deere’s employees, dealers, and suppliers, said May in a release, “Deere was able to complete a successful year and is positioned to continue providing differentiated solutions and unlocking even greater value for customers.”
Deere & Co. predicted it would make between $3.6 billion and $4 billion in 2021, which would beat both full-year 2020 and 2019 earnings. May said the company expects to benefit from higher crop prices in the year to come, which he says will drive demand for farm equipment.
The company expects net sales of agriculture and turf equipment to increase between 10% to 15% and construction and forestry equipment to grow between 5% and 10%.