Slight dip in sales at Owens Corning
Owens Corning has reported net sales of $1.24 billion for its first fiscal quarter of 2011, a 2% decrease from sales of $1.27 billion in the first quarter of 2010.
First-quarter 2011 net earnings were $24 million, compared with net earnings of $48 million a year ago.
In composites, net sales increased during the first quarter of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010. More than half of the increase in net sales was the result of higher selling prices during the quarter.
Net sales in the building materials segment were lower in the first quarter of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010. Most of this decrease was related to lower sales volumes within the roofing business. Sales were also negatively impacted by the fourth-quarter 2010 divestiture of the North American masonry products business and lower sales in the insulation business.
In the roofing business, lower shingle volumes accounted for approximately three-fourths of the decrease in net sales during the quarter. Insulation showed lower net sales in the first quarter of 2011 than in the same period in 2010 due to lower sales volumes that were partially offset by higher selling prices. Lower sales volumes continue to persist given the current state of the U.S. housing market. Pricing actions taken in the United States in the second half of 2010 resulted in higher selling prices in the first quarter 2011 as compared to the first quarter of 2010.
"Owens Corning delivered profit in line with our expectations for the first quarter driven by continued strong performance in the composites and roofing businesses," said chairman and CEO Mike Thaman. The company made investments to expand its composites capacity and convert insulation facilities to produce its new EcoTouch insulation product, according to Thaman.
“We expect that these investments — combined with improving economic conditions and our recent pricing actions — will improve profitability throughout the balance of the year," Thaman said.
Attendance climbs at stair industry event
The Stairway Manufacturers’ Association’s (SMA’s) annual conference in Charlotte, N.C., attracted 20% more attendees than last year’s event in St. Louis, the SMA announced.
During the conference, the membership ratified a new mission statement: "To be the greatest resource of knowledge and tools contributing to the success of our members and the stair industry." The SMA is currently reviewing its advertising and display policy to determine if less restrictions would be beneficial to its mission.
Also at the event, the 2011 SMA StairCraft Award winners were announced. "Best Curved Stairway" and "Best Stair Part" were awarded to Arcways of Neenah, Wis.; "Best Straight Stairway" was awarded to Seattle Stair and Design of Seattle. StairCraft Award Winners are chosen on the basis of aesthetic value, stair safety, quality, and technical challenge.
The association will hold a conference in Indianapolis Nov. 11-13.
Shoplifting suspect uses mulch to steal wire
A South Carolina teenager has been charged with repeatedly stealing coils of metal wire from a Home Depot store by hiding them under bags of mulch, according to an article in GoUpstate.com.
Malik Shaban, age 17, was arrested April 25 outside a Home Depot in Spartanburg, S.C., where police found him with three bags of mulch in his car, the report said. Under the mulch and a jacket in the car were nine rolls of copper wire valued at $808, according to the article.
Police said there were two other similar incidents this month. On April 5, store employees claimed that Shaban took a 500-foot roll of wire in a cart and pushed the cart out of the store without paying. An employee found the wire behind the store before Shaban was able to load it into his car, the report said. The wire was valued at $516.
In a second incident on April 22, store employees told police that Shaban placed six rolls of electrical wire in a car, then put three bags of mulch on top of it. Shaban paid for the mulch but stole the wire, valued at $720, according to the police report.
Shaban was charged with shoplifting and two counts of shoplifting enhanced. He was released from detention on a $12,000 bond.