Strong demand drives Vulcan

Strong demand drives Vulcan
Published: 27 July 2005

Vulcan Materials Company today announced record second quarter net earnings of US$122m, as compared to US$88m. Net sales increased 21 percent from the prior year’s level, while earnings from continuing operations before income taxes increased 32 percent.
Commenting on the second quarter results and full year outlook, Don James, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer said, "Our construction materials operations achieved excellent earnings growth and margin improvement due to strong volumes and pricing. Construction activity remains robust and demand for our products is strong. As a result, we are increasing our outlook for the full year." 

According to Mr. James, "We continue to be very optimistic regarding the outlook for full year earnings growth. Overall demand remains strong and pricing gains achieved in the first half of 2005 should benefit second half results. As a result, we are increasing our full year guidance for continuing operations from a range of $2.95 to $3.20 per diluted share to a range of $3.00 to $3.25 per diluted share. In the third quarter, we expect to earn $1.10 to $1.25 per diluted share from continuing operations. 
"Aggregates pricing was up approximately six per cent through the first half of the year and the rate of increase should remain in that range for the full year. The strength in aggregates pricing should more than offset higher costs for diesel and certain parts and supplies. We now expect aggregates volumes to increase approximately 5 to 7 per cent for the year. Our outlook for demand through the remainder of the year is based on residential construction remaining at high levels and a continuation of the modest recovery underway in private nonresidential construction. As a result of increased federal appropriations, we expect higher highway spending for the year. Passage of a new multi-year highway bill will enable state DOT’s to move forward with significant new projects and will set the stage for steady growth in highway spending for the coming years."