Cargill Inc. said on Tuesday quarterly net profit nearly doubled, helped by a $597 million gain from the merger of its fertilizer unit with IMC Global Inc.

Cargill, whose operations range from grain processing and exports to crude oil trading and fertilizer production, said net profit in the fiscal second quarter ended Nov. 30 rose to $1.01 billion, compared with $518 million a year ago.

The company said earnings from continuing operations were $956 million, which included the $597 million related to the merger of Cargill Crop Nutrition and IMC Global to form farm chemicals maker The Mosaic Company last year.

Excluding the gain and the one-time noncash item of $597 million, Cargill's second-quarter earnings were $415 million.

The year-earlier quarterly profit of $518 million included $117 million in gains from special items and $9 million from discontinued operations.

Excluding one-time items in both quarters, Cargill's second-quarter 2005 net profit rose 3 percent from a year ago.

Cargill said second quarter profit was boosted by its food ingredients, animal nutrition and processing segments.

Source: Yahoo News