US companies stumped by slower growth

11 August 2014

Forest products giant Weyerhaeuser managed a 28% increase in earnings from its operational activities, but a small increase in sales during the second quarter failed to impress investors.

Excluding special items, Weyerhaeuser earned US$234m, which exceeded analyst predictions, up from US$183m a year ago. However, sales rose only 5% to US$1.9bn when excluding discontinued operations, falling short of analysts expectations of US$2.27m.

"Severe winter weather earlier this year dampened the start of the spring building season," said Weyerhaeuser CEO Doyle Simons.
Sales from Timberlands were up 5% from the first three months at US$397m with earnings 3% higher at US$170m. Wood products were up 20% at US$1bn with earnings 60% higher at US$102m.

The company said sales rose seasonally across all product lines and average selling prices were higher.

"Through the recent divestiture of our homebuilding business and last year's Longview Timber acquisition, we have created a focused forest products company committed to driving operational improvements and fully capitalising on the continued measured recovery in US housing markets and the overall economy," Mr Simons said