Shares in Post Holdings have begun trading in New York after the US cereal maker was spun off from private-label food group Ralcorp Holdings.

Ralcorp said yesterday (6 February) that its move to split the business in two had been completed at the close of business on Friday.

Shareholders in Ralcorp, which believes the spin-off will create more value for investors in both companies, received one share in Post for every two they owned in the private-label firm.

In December, Ralcorp reported annual losses of US$187m after falling sales from Post and "weakness" in the US branded cereal sector led the group to record impairment charges on the cereal business. A review of Post also warned of reduced sales growth and profitability of certain brands in the near-term.

However, Ralcorp has argued that Post's brand name will benefit the business. Post, meanwhile, plans to revamp its marketing team and focus more on its larger retail accounts as part of a series of measures to improve its performance.

Post's stock closed at $27.14 in New York yesterday after opening at $27.13 but falling at one stage to $26.70. Shares in Ralcorp fell 0.19% to $75.63.