Texas Industries Inc’s (TXI) fiscal second-quarter loss widened as margins slumped despite recent cost-cutting efforts.
For the quarter ended November 30, Texas Industries posted a loss of US$21m, or 75 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier loss of US$11.2m, or 40 cents a share. Restructuring-related charges and the absence of a tax-related benefit added 11 cents and 30 cents, respectively, to the per-share losses. Net sales rose 5.4% to US$156.1m.
"While the general economy is showing signs of some improvement, it has yet to manifest itself in increased construction activity in our markets," stated Mel Brekhus, Chief Executive Officer. "This is consistent with my expectation of a slow and prolonged recovery in the construction industry."
Texas Industries unveiled a series of cost-cutting measures in September that have raised efficiency and cut the company’s workforce by about 11% since the end of August. However, Mr Brekhus noted: “There is obviously much more work to be accomplished in order to reach our goals of a 15% gross profit margin and SG&A expense at 8% of sales by the end of fiscal year 2013 but we are off to a very good start.”
Total cement segment sales were US$77.23m for the quarter, higher than US$68.58m a year ago. Cement shipments rose to 884t from 784t last year, while prices edged down to US$78.07/t from last year’s US$78.49/t.