Without PMI - Altria's Net Income Drops 58%..

August 1, 2008 - Altria GroupInc.'s second-quarter net income tumbled 58%. This was the Altria Group Inc., parent of cigarette maker Philip Morris, third consecutive quarter that profits fell as sales declined and the company spent more to win back smokers from lower-priced brands. Sales - Domestic vs International.

Michael E. Szymanczyk, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Altria Group, Inc. said, "PM USA delivered solid income growth and achieved strong retail share results, driven by Marlboro, and John Middleton's cigar business delivered strong income, volume and share performance." Marlboro achieves record retail share of 41.8%, up 0.8 share points versus the second quarter of 2007 while the company's market share for all brands reached 51 percent of the entire U.S. market. John Middleton Co. (Black&Mild Cigars) delivers strong cigar volume gains, up 11.0% versus the second quarter of 2007. Middleton's second-quarter retail share increased 2.6 share points versus the prior-year period to 27.8% of the machine-made large cigar segment, driven by Black & Mild. At the end of the first quarter of 2008, PM USA's Sales Force began representing Middleton's brands at retail.

Philip Morris USA's cigarette shipment volume fell 4.5 percent in the U.S PM USA's domestic cigarette shipment volume of 43.6 billion units was 4.5% lower than the prior-year period. The company lowered its outlook on U.S. industrywide cigarette volumes 3% to 3.5% a year , compared to a March 2008 view of 2.5% to 3% citing economic conditions, cigarette excise taxes and retailer inventories.

David Beran, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer said Philip Morris USA believes it can offset declining cigarette consumption by moving more aggresively into the smokeless tobacco and spitfree smokeless-tobacco pouches called snus.

But is this true: Sales of snus products in the U.S. have been disappointing - one reason it's too difficult to learn the art of snusing except for kids that have the time to experiment. Altria's Plan for Organic Growth is failing. Altria's growth depends on the Marlboro name. Many more news briefs on this same subject - do a random search.

Altria Group spent more than $3.9 million in second quarter to lobby on taxes, other issues.

Altria owns approximately 28.5% of SABMiller (South African Breweries - Miller) plc. SABMiller, the world's largest brewer by volume, said world-wide beer shipments fell 1.6% in the quarter ended June 30, excluding sales at brewers acquired within the past year. (SABMiller Sales Fall After Prices Rise by David Kesmodel, Wall Street
Journal, 8/1/2008, B3)

Altria Net Income Drops 58% by Shara Tibken and Mary Ellen Lloyd, Wall Street Journal, 8/1/2008, B4; Altria Group, Inc. (Altria) Reports 2008 Second-Quarter Results, Reuters, 7/31/2008; Altria 2nd-quarter profit falls 58 percent over 2007 results that include international unit by VINNEE TONG, AP Business Writer, 7/31/2008 and CORRECTING and REPLACING Altria Group, Inc. (Altria) Reports 2008 Second-Quarter Results Altria Group.