Ferro Corp. recently reported that deteriorating conditions in the global economy resulted in significantly lower-than-expected demand for its products in the three months ended December 31, 2008. The company now expects to report net sales for the fourth quarter of 2008 in the range of $430 million to $435 million, or approximately 25% below the same period in 2007. The decline in sales, relative to the company’s expectations for the fourth quarter, was driven primarily by reduced customer demand in the Performance Coatings, Color and Glass Performance Materials, Polymer Additives, and Specialty Plastics segments.
As a result of the reduced sales, Ferro now expects to report a loss for the fourth quarter of approximately $.17 per share, excluding special gains and charges, despite aggressive, ongoing efforts to reduce costs and conserve cash. Ferro’s prior estimate for the 2008 fourth quarter was for net sales in the range of $500 million to $550 million and earnings in the range of $0.33 to $0.38 per share, which included an estimated gain of approximately $.31 per share related to the sale of the company’s Fine Chemicals business and estimated charges of $.13 per share related to manufacturing rationalization activities.
“Ferro’s improved performance in the first three quarters of 2008 demonstrated the benefits of the company’s worldwide restructuring and cost control initiatives,” said James F. Kirsch, chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Despite the sharp decline in worldwide economic activity during the fourth quarter, our full-year 2008 earnings are expected to show improvement from 2007 when adjusted for special charges, the gain from the sale of our Fine Chemicals business and discontinued operations.”
Additional details are available at www.ferro.com