Jewett-Cameron earnings strong in the third quarter
Jewett-Cameron, a distributor of wood and metal products as well as other specialty items, reported earnings rose 26 percent in the third quarter to $960,376 from $756,897 in the same period last year.
Sales in the third quarter fell 15.3 percent to $17.7 million from $20.9 million in the same period last year.
The decline in sales was due to lower demand for industrial wood products, the company said. Those lower sales were partially offset by stronger demand in the lawn, garden and pet segments, the company said.
In a statement, the distributor predicted the industrial wood segment would continue to struggle, while demand for specialty metal products – such as fencing and gate support systems – will remain strong.
Jewett-Cameron Trading Co. operates through several subsidiaries, including Jewett-Cameron Lumber Corp., whose business consists of warehouse distribution and direct sales of wood products and specialty metal products to home centers and other retailers. Greenwood Products, another subsidiary, distributes industrial wood and other specialty building products to customers in the marine and transportation industries. MSI-PRO is an importer and distributor of pneumatic air tools, industrial clamps and saw blades, among other products.
Housing starts rose between May and June
Housing starts rose 9.1 percent month-over-month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.066 million units, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. That figure is 26.9 percent below the June 2007 rate of 1.458 million.
Of those, single-family housing starts in June fell 5.3 percent to a rate of 647,000.
Housing completions in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.167 million, 1.2 percent above the revised May estimate of 1.153 million. That figure still is 21.7 percent below the revised June 2007 rate of 1.491 million.
Building permits in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.091 million, 11.6 percent higher than the May rate of 978,000. That figure is 23.9 percent below the June 2007 rate of 1.433 million.
Earnings fall at Stock, Ferguson
Wolseley, the parent company of Stock Building Supply and Ferguson Enterprises, reported an 8 percent drop in revenues for its North American division during the 11-month period ended June 30, 2008. Earnings for the division, which also includes Wolseley’s Canadian operations, fell 46 percent.
Stock’s loss for the 11-month period was $203.8 million, compared to a $104 million profit in the comparable period last year. Revenues were down by 25 percent, reflecting a 22 percent decline in same-store sales. Wolseley executives blamed the results on increased price competition and pressure on gross margin at Stock, combined with the continued slowdown in housing starts.
Ferguson has benefited from the continued strength of the commercial and industrial sectors but suffered some weakness from declines in the residential and remodeling markets, according to Wolseley. Revenues for the plumbing and HVAC distributor’s 11-month period were marginally up due to acquisitions, while organic revenue declined by 3 percent. Ferguson’s profits were 10 percent lower than in the previous year, primarily due to costs associated with the restructuring announced in May. Ferguson has closed 75 branches since that time.
In a statement about its European operations, Wolseley noted that “there has been a rapid deterioration in market conditions in the U.K, particularly with new housing, and many other European markets continue to soften. The Group continues to focus on cost reduction and cash flow enhancement.”
Headquartered in Reading, England, Wolseley is an international building materials distributor with nearly 5,000 branch operations in 28 countries. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange.