Manufacturers

Hubbell reports single-digit sales growth for 2012

Hubbell Incorporated (NYSE: HUBA, HUBB) of Shelton, Conn., posted a 2% increase in sales during the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2012. The company’s net sales during that period were $752.5 million, up from $740 million for the fourth quarter of 2011.

For the fourth quarter, Hubbell’s operating income was $110.5 million, or 14.7% of net sales, compared to $109.8 million, or 14.8 percent of net sales, for the comparable period of 2011. Net income in the fourth quarter of 2012 was $71.9 million versus $70.0 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2011.

An international manufacturer of electrical and electronic products, Hubbell posted earnings per diluted share of $1.20 in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to $1.17 reported in the fourth quarter of 2011. Free cash flow (defined as cash flow from operations less capital expenditures) was $139.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2012 versus $103.7 million reported in the comparable period of 2011.

For the year, Hubbell’s net sales were up 6% over 2011. Net sales for 2012 were $3.0 billion and operating income was $471.8 million (or 15.5% of net sales). The company’s net income for 2012 was $299.7 million, an increase of 12% compared to the $267.9 million reported in 2011. Earnings per diluted share were $5.00, or 13% higher than the $4.42 reported for the comparable period of 2011. Free cash flow was $300.0 million compared to $279.6 million reported in 2011.

In a press release, Timothy H. Powers, Hubbell’s chairman of the board, said the uncertainty surrounding the U.S. election and the “fiscal cliff” both dampened demand for the manufacturer’s products in the fourth quarter of 2012. “Our overall sales increased slightly in the quarter with essentially flat organic demand while acquisitions added two percentage points to our sales growth,” Powers stated.

“From a profitability perspective, we reported operating margin of 14.7%,” he added, “[which was] in line with our expectations despite some market softening as we exited the year.”

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