US Georgia Gulf swings to $3.3m Q4 loss on drop in sales

16 February 2012 00:16  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Georgia Gulf swung to a fourth-quarter loss of $3.3m (€2.5m) from a profit of $15.1m in the same quarter of 2010 as a result of a drop in sales revenue and the inclusion of various expenses, the US chlor-alkali and aromatics producer said on Wednesday.

Georgia Gulf reported fourth-quarter net sales of $673.6m, compared with $692.8m in the fourth quarter of 2010.

The loss for the quarter ended 31 December included an asset impairment charge, restructuring expenses and other charges.

In the chlorovinyls segment, fourth-quarter 2011 net sales increased to $321.9m from $319.5m during the fourth quarter of 2010, yet operating income fell to $21.5m compared with operating income of $41.5m in the same quarter of 2010. The company attributed the operating income loss to lower sales volume of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and caustic soda and higher raw material costs, offset by higher caustic soda sales prices.

In the aromatics segment, fourth-quarter net sales fell to $162.4m compared with $199.9m during the same quarter in 2010, as a result of lower sales volumes.

During the fourth quarter of 2011, the aromatics segment posted an operating loss of $3.7m, compared with operating income of $9.4m during the same quarter in 2010. The decrease was caused by lower sales volumes and lower margins driven by a sharp decline in benzene and propylene prices in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared with the same period a year earlier.

Building products segment sales were $189.7m for the fourth quarter of 2011, increasing 9% from $174.4m in sales in the same quarter of 2010.

The company reported net income of $57.8m for all of 2011, up from net income of $42.7m in 2010. Sales for the year totaled $3.2bn, compared with $2.8bn in 2010.

“We are confident that our integrated chemicals and building products business is well positioned to take advantage of our access to low-cost natural gas and benefit from continuing growth in global demand and the recovery of the U.S. housing market as it occurs,” said company CEO Paul Carrico.

($1 = €0.76)

By: Ken Fountain

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