ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, U.S. — CHS Inc. on July 10 reported earnings for the third quarter were down 38% to $250.8 million from $405.1 million reported in the same quarter last year.

CHS attributed the decline to delayed spring planting in many areas which affected crop inputs movement, lower grain exports resulting from a reduced 2012 U.S. harvest and scheduled maintenance at the CHS Laurel, Montana, U.S., refinery. Revenues for the quarter were $11.9 billion, compared with $11 billion for the same three-month period in fiscal 2012.

For the first nine months of 2013, CHS reported earnings of $869.6 million a 3% drop from the $899.7 million reported for the first three quarters of fiscal 2012. Revenues for nine months were $33.5 billion, up 13% from $29.6 billion for the same period a year ago, reflecting increased year-to-date average prices and grain sales volumes.

Year-to-date, Energy segment earnings decreased slightly due to lower margins in  refined fuels partially offset by strong performance in propane, lubricants and transportation operations. 

Earnings for the CHS Ag segment declined through the third quarter primarily due to lower margins resulting from reduced grain exports and the late spring planting season which affected the company's wholesale crop nutrients businesses. 

Earnings also declined for CHS local Country Operations retail businesses as the late, wet spring reduced fertilizer movement.

CHS reports results for its business services operations and its two food processing-related joint ventures under the Corporate and Other category which recorded improved profitability through the third quarter of fiscal 2013. 

Earnings increased largely due to improved performance by the company's Business Solutions area, as well as its ownership in Ventura Foods, LLC, the company's packaged food joint venture, and Horizon Milling, a wheat milling joint venture.