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Kraft Foods expects lower 4Q revenue

Kraft said revenue is expected to drop 10.7 percent to $4.49 billion in the fourth quarter

JONATHAN ERNST/Reuters/File 2012

Kraft said revenue is expected to drop 10.7 percent to $4.49 billion in the fourth quarter

NORTHFIELD, Ill. — Kraft Foods, the company behind brands such as Oscar Mayer and Miracle Whip, said Friday that it expects to report lower revenue for the fourth quarter and raised its earnings forecast for this year.

‘‘The fourth quarter was one of real progress and some significant disappointment,’’ Kraft chief executive Tony Vernon told investors during a conference call Friday. ‘‘We made great strides in productivity, profit, and cash, but we really missed our topline.’’

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Kraft, based in Northfield, Ill., is looking to redefine itself after splitting last year from its global snack foods business called Mondelez International Inc. Mondelez has brands including Oreo and Nabisco. The split was intended to allow each of the companies to focus on a more targeted portfolio of products, thus accelerating growth.

Kraft said it anticipates earnings of about 15 cents per share for its fiscal fourth quarter. Analysts expect earnings of 23 cents per share.

Kraft said revenue is expected to drop 10.7 percent to $4.49 billion in the fourth quarter from an adjusted total of $5.03 billion a year ago. Wall Street expected revenue of $4.75 billion.

Kraft said the decline is due in part to the prior-year period having an extra week of sales. But Vernon also noted that sales were also hurt because rivals offered lower prices in certain categories, like its Oscar Mayer’s Lunchables, to lure financially strapped mothers.

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