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STANLEY NET SALES AND EARNINGS UP 11 PERCENT; EPS UNCHANGED

 STANLEY NET SALES AND EARNINGS UP 11 PERCENT; EPS UNCHANGED
 NEW BRITAIN, Conn.. April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- "Slight improvements in the economy produced improved business results which, when combined with acquisitions made during 1991 and the first quarter of 1992, produced net sales and net earnings gains of 11 percent," reported Richard H. Ayers, chairman and chief executive officer of The Stanley Works (NYSE: SWK). "The average number of Stanley shares outstanding were up 12 percent over the first quarter 1991 and the earnings per share therefore were $.38, unchanged from the year earlier quarter."
 Net sales for the first quarter were $502 million, up 11 percent compared with $454 million for the same quarter last year. Acquisitions made during 1991, and in this quarter, contributed to the sales gain as did increases in existing businesses. The quarterly sales increase is the first significant increase since the second quarter 1988. Price increases were nominal while the currency effects of a stronger dollar negatively impacted sales by about 2 percent.
 Net earnings for the quarter were $17.5 million, up 11 percent compared with $15.8 million (prior to an accounting change for post- retirement employee benefits) in first quarter 1991. Earnings per share for the period, on 12 percent more shares outstanding, was $.38, the same as reported for the first quarter last year. Ayers said: "In the quarter, we provided for closing a plant in the United Kingdom. We also realized substantial legal costs related to the unsolicited, undesirable and hostile actions of Newell Company."
 In the first quarter 1992, the company adopted Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 109, "Accounting for Income Taxes". This standard requires a change in the reporting of income taxes. Net earnings for 1991 have been restated to reflect this change, the effect of which was not material.
 Gross margins of 33.3 percent and operating expenses of 25.3 percent for the first quarter 1992 were similar to the quarter a year ago. Interest-net expenses and other-net expenses were 1.2 percent and 1.4 percent of sales for the quarter respectively, and were comparable to the period last year. The effective tax rate was 37.0 percent, down slightly from last year.
 Net sales in the United States were up 10 percent for the quarter from acquisitions, plus unit volume gains in a number of businesses. Net sales in Europe were up 9 percent in the first quarter as the effect of acquisitions and modest price increases more than offset the decline in unit volume in existing businesses and the negative impact of a stronger dollar. Net sales in other areas increased 15 percent with contributions from both unit volume and acquisitions. Price increases were more than offset by the negative effects of currency.
 Tools sales increased 6 percent for the quarter on the strength of recent acquisition-related volume in the United States, Europe, and Australia, coupled with unit volume gains in the sale of industrial and engineered tools. Consumer tools volume reflected a sales reduction in private label mechanics' tools. The increase in consumer and construction-related activity in the United States has had a positive impact on tools sales. Tools sales in Europe, exclusive of recent acquisitions, remain weak. Sales in other areas reflect volume gains in the Far East more than offsetting continued economic weakness in Canada. Tools price increases overall were nominal. Operating profits for the quarter of $36.2 million increased 2.5 percent compared with last year and operating margins were 9.7 percent compared with 10.0 percent in the same period last year.
 Hardware sales increased 45 percent, largely as a result of the 1991 acquisitions of Nirva Closet Systems and Monarch Mirror Door Company. A slight increase in unit volume was offset by nominal price decreases and the negative effects of currency. Operating profits, however, increased substantially and operating margins also increased to 9.2 percent from 8.9 percent for the first quarter last year.
 Specialty Hardware sales increased 9 percent as a result of unit volume growth in the United States and Canada. Operating profits more than doubled for the quarter and operating margins increased to 2.9 percent from 1.5 percent in the comparable period last year. The products in this segment are seasonal. Their major business activity is concentrated in the second, third and fourth quarters.
 Ayers stated: "In the quarter, we announced the acquisition of three businesses, all additions to our Tools business segment. LaBounty Manufacturing Company was acquired in January. The company manufactures mounted hydraulic tools for building, demolition and infrastructure repair.
 "In April, we acquired two additional tools businesses - Goldblatt Tool Company and Mail Media, known principally for its business Jensen Tools, Inc. Goldblatt manufactures masonry, tile and drywall tools and paint application and preparation products. Jensen Tools is a direct marketer of precision tools kits for electronics technicians."
 Ayers concluded: "We remain cautious in our outlook for economic growth in our served markets worldwide but, nonetheless, we are encouraged by the recent positive trends in consumer and construction- related activities in the United States. Industrial products categories are beginning to show some promising signs of recovery in the U.S. economy but still remain weak. We have not yet experienced any significant turnaround in our Canadian markets or in Europe. The integration of our recent acquisitions is progressing well and, with our continued focus on inventory and cost control, we expect improving results as the year progresses."
 THE STANLEY WORKS AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Consolidated Statements Of Earnings
 (Millions of Dollars)
 FIRST QUARTER
 1992 1991
 Net Sales $ 502.1 $ 453.6
 Costs and Expenses
 Cost of sales 334.7 301.4
 Selling, general and
 administrative 127.0 114.7
 Interest - net 5.8 5.4
 Other - net 6.8 6.8
 Total 474.3 428.3
 Earnings Before Income Taxes
 and Cumulative Effect of
 Accounting Change 27.8 25.3
 Income Taxes 10.3 9.5
 Earnings Before Cumulative
 Effect of Accounting Change 17.5 15.8
 Cumulative Effect of Accounting
 Change for Postretirement
 Benefits -- Cumulative Effect of
 Accounting Change $ .38 $ .38
 Cumulative Effect of
 Accounting Change (.29)
 Net Earnings Per Share of
 Common Stock $ .38 $ .09
 Dividends per share $ .31 $ .30
 Average shares outstanding 45,782 41,025
 (in thousands)
 See notes to consolidated financial statements.
 THE STANLEY WORKS AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Business Segment Information
 (Millions of Dollars)
 FIRST QUARTER
 1992 1991
 INDUSTRY SEGMENTS
 Net Sales
 Tools
 Consumer $ 155.7 $ 144.5
 Industrial 95.0 90.0
 Engineered 123.7 119.2
 Total Tools 374.4 353.7
 Hardware 76.2 52.7
 Specialty Hardware 51.5 47.2
 Consolidated $ 502.1 $ 453.6
 Operating Profit
 Tools $ 36.2 $ 35.3
 Hardware 7.0 4.7
 Specialty Hardware 1.5 0.7
 Total 44.7 40.7
 Net corporate expenses (9.2) (6.8)
 Interest expense (7.7) (8.6)
 Earnings before
 income taxes $ 27.8 $ 25.3
 GEOGRAPHIC AREAS
 Net Sales
 United States $ 346.6 $ 314.4
 Europe 90.2 82.5
 Other Areas 65.3 56.7
 Consolidated $ 502.1 $ 453.6
 Operating Profit
 United States $ 29.7 $ 22.9
 Europe 9.4 10.8
 Other Areas 5.6 7.0
 Total $ 44.7 $ 40.7
 See notes to consolidated financial statements.
 THE STANLEY WORKS AND SUBSIDIARIES
 NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
 In the first quarter of 1992, the company adopted Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 109, "Accounting for Income Taxes". This standard requires an asset and liability approach for financial accounting and reporting for income taxes. Financial statements for fiscal years 1991, 1990, 1989 and 1988 have been retroactively restated for the effects of adopting this new standard. The cumulative effect of this accounting change on years prior to 1991, reflected as an adjustment to opening 1991 retained earnings, is not material to the consolidated financial position, nor was it material to 1991 restated net earnings.
 Opening 1992 retained earnings has been restated to reflect the acquisition
of LaBounty Manufacturing, Inc. The transaction, which is accounted for as a pooling of interests, was effected through the exchange of 660,635 shares of common stock of the company for all the issued and outstanding shares of LaBounty. Periods prior to 1992 were not restated due to the immaterial effect of the pooled company on the consolidated financial statements.
 -0- 4/15/92
 /CONTACT: Ronald F. Gilrain, vice president-public affairs of Stanley Works, 203-827-3882/
 (SWK) CO: Stanley Works ST: Connecticut IN: HOU SU: ERN


SM -- NY017 -- 8514 04/15/92 09:14 EDT
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