The Quaker Oats Company (NYSE: OAT - news) today reported diluted earnings per share of $1.11 for its second quarter ended June 30, 2000, excluding unusual items. This compares to $0.95 per share in the second quarter of 1999, an increase of 17 percent.Including unusual items in both years, second-quarter diluted earnings were $1.10 in 2000, versus $1.22 per share in 1999, a decrease of 10 percent. The decrease relates primarily to a one-time favorable tax adjustment of $0.27 per share in the year-ago quarter (see section entitled "Unusual Items" for details)."Our results again exceeded expectations, with Gatorade delivering another quarter of excellent sales and volume growth," said Robert S. Morrison, chairman, president and chief executive officer. "Its volume was up strongly in all channels of distribution, reflecting strong consumer acceptance of Gatorade's new Fierce flavors, the new eight-pack and the EDGE sport bottle."In addition, results were bolstered by strong operating income growth in U.S. and Canadian Foods, and signs of a turnaround in Latin America, where we achieved growth in both Foods and Beverages -- top and bottom line."