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ESTERLINE REPORTS THIRD QUARTER, NET EARNINGS OF 23 CENTS PER SHARE; SALES TOTAL $73.5 MILLION

ESTERLINE REPORTS THIRD QUARTER, NET EARNINGS OF 23 CENTS PER SHARE;
 SALES TOTAL $73.5 MILLION
 BELLEVUE, Wash., Sept. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Esterline Technologies (NYSE: ESL) today reported third quarter (ended July 31) net earnings of $1.5 million, or 23 cents per share, on sales of $73.5 million. This compares with $2.2 million, or 33 cents per share, on sales of $84.8 million in the same year-ago period.
 Last year's third quarter net earnings reflected an exceptionally low effective tax rate -- 21 percent compared to 40.1 percent this year. The lower rate was due primarily to the availability of offsets to foreign taxes. On a pretax basis, this year's third quarter earnings were $2.6 million compared with $2.8 million in the same period a year ago.
 Decreasing debt levels and lower interest rates combined to reduce interest expense in the third quarter of fiscal 1992 -- $1.6 million vs. $2.9 million in the same period last year.
 Net earnings for the first nine months of the fiscal year were $2.8 million, or 41 cents per share, on sales of $222.5 million. In the same year-ago period, net earnings were $4.6 million, or 71 cents per share, on sales of $259.7 million. The tax rate was essentially the same in both periods at approximately 40 percent.
 Wendell P. Hurlbut, Esterline's president and chief executive officer, said "...soft markets continue to hamper Esterline's sales. However, recently we have experienced an increase in order inquiries."
 The company continued to reduce its debt during the quarter with a paydown of $6.5 million. Total debt at the end of the third quarter was $91.6 million compared to $121 million a year ago. The company's debt-to-equity ratio at the end of the quarter was 1.1:1 vs. 1.6:1 last year. Year-to-date interest expense was $5.5 million vs. $10 million a year earlier.
 The company on Aug. 12 announced that it refinanced a portion of its debt through a private placement of $40 million in unsecured notes at a fixed interest rate of 8.75 percent for 10 years; no principal payments are due until 1996.
 Esterline is a leading manufacturer of automation equipment for the production of printed circuit boards and metal fabrication, instrumentation for quality control, power measurement and process control, and engineered products for the commercial aircraft, aerospace and defense industries.
 ESTERLINE TECHNOLOGIES AND SUBSIDIARIES
 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS
 (In thousands, except per-share amounts)
 Three months Nine months
 Ended July 31: 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Net sales $ 73,457 $ 84,826 $222,544 $259,713
 Costs and Expenses:
 Cost of sales 44,215 51,995 137,641 159,027
 Selling, general
 and administrative 25,041 27,213 74,811 83,039
 Interest expense, net 1,619 2,868 5,458 10,016
 Total 70,875 82,076 217,910 252,082
 Earnings before
 income taxes 2,582 2,750 4,634 7,631
 Income tax expense 1,036 578 1,873 2,997
 Net earnings $ 1,546 $ 2,172 $ 2,761 $ 4,634
 Net earnings
 per share $ 0.23 $ 0.33 $ 0.41 $ 0.71
 -0- 9/8/92
 /CONTACT: Brian D. Keogh of Esterline Technologies, 206-453-9400/
 (ESL) CO: Esterline Technologies ST: Washington IN: CPR SU: ERN


LM -- SE002 -- 6820 09/08/92 08:32 EDT
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Date:Sep 8, 1992
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