U.S. beef industry seen struggling, Brazil may have peaked: Moody's

"The performance of the world's two largest beef-processing industries will differ markedly through next year," Moody's says, referencing challenging conditions for the U.S. market and a strong cycle in Brazil.

Earnings for U.S. companies will "be the worst in a decade" in 2013 and 2014, Moody's thinks.

Brazilian producers, by contrast, "should remain profitable" even as "their EBITA margins could deteriorate next year due partly to higher costs related to recent capacity expansion and to expectations of no further decreases in cattle prices."

Diversified players such as Tyson (TSN) and JBS S.A. (JBSAY.PK -2.6%) should be able to offset beef business profit declines with "stronger earnings from other proteins."

Pure beef players like Minerva (MRVSY.PK) may face pressure "when the cycle turns" in Brazil.

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