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Trex Q3 loss narrows

BY HBSDealer Staff

Winchester, Va.-based Trex posted a third-quarter net loss of $0.5 million, compared with a net loss of $8.8 million in the 2010 period.

Net sales for the third quarter ended Sept. 30 totaled $67.9 million, up 12% from net sales of $60.6 million in the year-ago period.

For the nine months ended Sept. 30, Trex reported net income of $6.7 million, compared with a net loss of $9.6 million in the nine-month period of 2010. Net sales for the period totaled $215.3 million, down 11% from net sales of $242.4 million for the prior-year period. 

"During the third quarter, we executed well in a challenging environment, increasing year-over-year net sales by 12% even as consumer confidence deteriorated and the economic recovery lost steam,” said Ronald Kaplan, Trex chairman, president and CEO. “The new products we introduced over the past year have begun contributing to our sales growth. Market acceptance of Trex Deck Lighting has been strong and our new deck substructure product, Trex Elevations, is starting to generate considerable interest.

"Earlier this month we announced a new decking option, Trex Enhance(R), to our product lineup, giving consumers another notable choice for meeting their outdoor living needs. Offering a 20-year fade and stain warranty, scratch resistance and two rich colors, Enhance fits in the middle of our ‘good, better, best’ product platform strategy.”

The company expects net sales to be about $50 million to $55 million in the fourth quarter of 2011, sales in the first quarter of 2012 to exceed the first quarter of 2011 by at least 25%. 

"We believe our product offerings and sales strategies represent a solid platform for growth and we look forward to a robust winter and spring sales program,” Kaplan added. “We expect sales patterns to differ from last year primarily due to a change in our pricing strategy and early buy program.”

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Report: Consumer confidence unexpectedly up in October

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A report released Friday by Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan found that consumer confidence in the United States rose unexpectedly in October, a signal that an economic recovery process may still be intact.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan final index of consumer sentiment climbed to 60.9 from 59.4 in September, beating Bloomberg News economists’ projections of a drop to 58.

The preliminary reading for the month was 57.5.

Relief from plummeting stocks and rising gas prices has left Americans feeling more uplifted than in recent months, raising hopes that the collective good mood will spur more holiday spending.

“Consumers are not throwing caution to the winds, but their mood has lifted slightly from the recession-type readings late this summer,” said Chris Rupkey, chief financial economist at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ in New York City, who forecast a reading of 60. “The stock market is sharply higher, and the consumer is back in a spending mind frame.”

Estimates for the confidence measure ranged from 55 to 60, according to the Bloomberg survey. The index averaged 89 in the five years leading up to the recession that began in December 2007.

Commerce Department figures showed that spending increased in September by 0.6%, after a 0.2% gain the prior month.

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Green Glue gets high marks for sustainability

BY Ken Clark

An evaluation of the Green Glue Noiseproofing System found, among other things, that the system is indeed green.

Saint-Gobain recently commissioned Sustainable Solutions Corporation to undertake an evaluation of its Green Glue Noiseproofing System to understand how Green Glue could contribute to earning points in U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification system.

Among the findings:

• Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound and Sealant both passed the third party California Department of Health Services 01350 Standard Practice for the Test of Volatile Organic Emissions (VOCs);

• Using Green Glue Noiseproofing Joist Tape in an integrated building design can reduce floor noise and also act as a thermal break and increase energy efficiency of a space;

• Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound contributes to reducing resource consumption in buildings by eliminating the need for additional layers of gypsum board and providing high STC ratings with minimal resources; and

• The Green Glue manufacturing facility in Granville, N.Y., is committed to sustainable manufacturing and operations. Green Glue manufacturing produces close to zero waste and tubes, and packaging boxes contain recycled content.

"These tests underscore that the Green Glue Noiseproofing System has been thoroughly evaluated for sustainability by one of the world’s most respected independent consultants," says Steve Jette, marketing manager, Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics. "We are extremely pleased to receive this recognition and consider it an important milestone for our line of products."

Highlights from Sustainable Solutions’ evaluation on Green Glue, which can be downloaded here, include:

With buildings in the United States responsible for 39% of CO2 emissions and 40% of energy consumption per year, ‘green’ building is a growing trend in both existing buildings and new construction, according to Saint-Gobain. Compared with the rest of the industry, this sector has been a bright spot in a slow period, with green building in 2010 representing nearly one-third of all construction projects in the United States.

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