(Moline)--Moline-based Deere & Co. is blaming lower crop prices and the global recession for a 38 percent drop in its fiscal second-quarter profits.
The world's largest maker of farm equipment today also slashed its 2009 profit outlook by 27 percent.
Farmers have become increasingly cautious about spending on new equipment as crop prices -- the main factor driving machinery sales -- have tumbled from historic highs last year. The costs of fertilizer and fuel, meanwhile, remain relatively high. And the global credit crunch has made it more difficult to get loans.
Deere says it earned $472.3 million, or $1.11 per share, during the three months ended April 30. That's down from $763.5 million, or $1.74 per share, a year ago.