CARTHAGE, Mo.-Despite a healthy sales increase, fourth-quarter net income for Leggett & Platt took a 72 percent dive to $8.7 million.
Net sales for the quarter, which ended on Dec. 31, rose 7 percent to $854.1 million. However, as President and CEO David Haffner explained, the sales pickup occurred mostly because of inflation and currency rates, neither of which generated much profit for Leggett & Platt. In addition, restructuring costs and weak demand for some products has hampered the company’s business, Haffner added.
Gross margin for the quarter slimmed down 91 basis points to 16.7 percent. Selling and administrative expenses rose 10 percent in dollars and 37 basis points as a percentage of sales, to 11 percent.
For the full fiscal year, Leggett & Platt’s net income dropped 13 percent to $153.3 million, while net sales increased 8 percent to $3.6 billion.
Regarding the new fiscal year, Haffner said Leggett & Platt will continue its tight watch over costs, to exit unprofitable businesses and focus on other elements of its strategic goals. “We remain well poised for earnings growth when the economy expands,” he said.