USG Corporation, the leading North American plasterboard producer, increased turnover by13.9 per cent to US$3,804m in the first nine months of the year, with the trading profit advancing by 38.3 per cent to US$516m. United States Gypsum Company, its domestic plasterboard arm, increased plasterboard shipments by around 3 per cent in the year to date and prices in the third quarter were 14.9 per cent higher than in the comparative period last year and up by 6.9 per cent on the second quarter of 2005. The subsidiary reported a 47.8 per cent increase in trading profit for the nine moths to US$371m on a turnover 16.4 per cent higher at US$2,129m.
L&W Supply, the group’s US distribution arm, increased turnover by 17.1 per cent to US$1,506m and pushed ahead the trading profit by 39.5 per cent to US$106m. Worldwide Ceilings remains the weak performer in the group, with turnover ahead by just 1.0 per cent to US$529m and the trading profit declining by 14.5 per cent to US$47m, though there was an improvement in the third quarter. USG remains optimistic for the full year, in spite of higher energy and raw material costs and the New Orleans plasterboard and cement board plant having been put out of action by the hurricane Katrina.
The forest products and financial services group Temple Inland, a smaller producer of plasterboard, has reported plasterboard shipments for nine months ahead by 12.8 per cent, with third quarter prices up by around 17 per cent over the year and by around 9 per cent on the previous quarter. Its plasterboard volumes, however, are only some 7.5 per cent of those of the market leader.