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FedEx cuts fiscal 2019 outlook despite quarterly earnings beat

FedEx Corp. booked fiscal second-quarter earnings that beat estimates, but lowered its full-year outlook as economic weakness, especially in Europe, dented the performance of the delivery services company's international business.

The company now expects EPS, prior to adjustments and charges, in the range of $15.50 to $16.60 for fiscal 2019, down from the previous forecast of $17.20 to $17.80.

"While the U.S. economy remains solid, our international business weakened during the quarter, especially in Europe," FedEx CEO Frederick W. Smith said. "We are taking action to mitigate the impact of this trend through new cost-reduction initiatives."

FedEx shares traded 1.55% higher at market close but slid as much as 6% in after-hours trading following the company's earnings report.

The company said its net income increased to $935 million, or $3.51 per share, in the fiscal quarter that ended Nov. 30, up from $775 million, or $2.84 per share, in the year-ago quarter.

Non-GAAP EPS was $4.03, up from $3.18 in the year-ago period and higher than the S&P Global Market Intelligence estimate of $3.93.

Revenue totaled $17.82 billion during the quarter, up 9% from $16.31 billion in the prior-year period. Total operating income increased to $1.17 billion from $1.12 billion.

The company said that apart from lowering variable compensation, it will implement other cost-related initiatives in response to lower-than-expected performance. These measures include a voluntary buyout program for eligible employees, international network capacity reductions at FedEx Express, limited hiring in staff functions and reductions in discretionary spending.