NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Coca-Cola Co. reported a dramatic drop in its fourth-quarter earnings Tuesday, due largely to the impact of international market pressures.
Coke, which says it is well positioned for growth, posted net income of $597 million, or 24 cents per diluted share, down 27 percent from $817 million, or 33 cents a share, a year ago.
Operating income fell 20 percent to $937 million from $1.2 billion last year, as revenue dipped 5 percent to $4.5 billion.
"This past year has been a challenging period ... as economic slowdowns in several key markets had a short-term impact, slowing volume growth and affecting our earnings," said M. Douglas Ivester, chairman and CEO. "Even though the economic environment became more uncertain and volatile in the later part of 1998, we strongly believe that our fundamental opportunities for long-term growth have not changed."
For the year, net income fell 14 percent to $3.5 billion, with diluted earnings per share of $1.42. Year-ago results, however, include a 22 cent per share gain from transactions.
Coke (KO) shares jumped 2-1/16 to 62-15/16 Monday on the New York Stock Exchange.