Toll Brothers reports Q4 and full year losses
Toll Brothers, one of the nation’s largest home builders with a specialty in luxury homes, reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $78.8 million, compared to a net loss of $81.8 million in the year-ago period. The company’s full fiscal year, which ended Oct. 31, 2008, saw a net loss of $297.8 million, compared to net income of $35.7 million for 2007’s full-year.
“Obviously there are enormous challenges in our industry. But we believe the financial strength of our organization will put us in a good position to take advantage of opportunities … that we expect will arise from the industry’s current distress,” said Robert I. Toll, chairman and CEO.
“We are beginning to see some deals that are appealing in terms of quality but not price: We believe our strong capital position will give us an advantage in competing for them at the appropriate time,” he added.
In addition, fourth-quarter revenues were $698.9 million, down 40 percent from revenues of $1.17 billion in the same period last year. Twelve-month revenues were $3.16 billion, down 32 percent from 2007’s twelve-month revenues of $4.65 billion.
NAHB cuts staff
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) announced cutbacks on staff and operating costs that will result in the savings of $11.5 million for the association in 2009.
The move was described by President and CEO Jerry Howard as “by far my toughest and most difficult decision,” in his 20 years at the NAHB.
“With our builders and other members of the housing industry confronting the most serious recession in more than 50 years, we are announcing today that NAHB is cutting $11.5 million from its operating budget to ensure that NAHB remains the premier advocacy and service trade association for the residential construction industry,” he said, in a prepared statement.
The organization will eliminate 52 positions, of which half are currently vacant. Certain expenditures previously approved for 2009 will also be reduced.
The cost cutting was brought on by what Howard called “stark financial realities.” The NAHB’s two main sources of income – membership and trade shows – are expected to be down significantly in 2009.
“By taking this action now, we help position the association to maintain its advocacy leadership and vital services for an industry struggling in the toughest economic environment seen in generations.”
Facilities achieve energy accolades
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recognized “Energy Champion Plants,” including plants operated by CertainTeed, Black & Decker and Osram Sylvania.
The awards program is part of Save Energy Now, a national initiative of the DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) to drive a 25 percent reduction in industrial energy intensity in 10 years. Industrial companies can participate in no-cost energy assessments and utilize ITP resources to reduce energy use while increasing profits, according to the DOE.
Forty-three plants were recognized for Champion Plant status, which means they achieved more than 250,000 MMBtu total energy savings or more than 15 percent total energy savings. The plants include: Black & Decker in Tampa, Fla.; CertainTeed Corp., Roofing Products, in Shreveport, La.; and Osram Sylvania in St. Marys, Pa.
The group also recognized Energy Savers — plants that achieved more than 75,000 MMBtu total energy savings or more than 7.5 percent total energy savings. These include Owens Corning in Savannah, Ga.; Johns Manville in Jacksonville, Fla.; Dow Chemical Company in Freeport, Texas; and DuPont in Deepwater, N.J.