CHICAGO—Littelfuse, Inc. (NASDAQ:LFUS) today reported financial results for the third quarter ended September 26, 2015.
Sales for the third quarter of 2015 were $215.5 million compared to $217.6 million for the prior-year quarter, a loss of 1 percent. Excluding currency effects, sales increased by 4% compared to the prior-year quarter due to continued growth in automotive and improvement in the electrical business.
Earnings for the third quarter of 2015 were $1.43 per diluted share. This was record performance driven largely by improvement in adjusted operating margin to 19.5%.
Electrical sales increased 8% year over year (12% excluding currency effects) due to solid growth in the core fuse business and continued recovery in custom products.
The company repurchased 350,000 shares during the third quarter of 2015 at an average price of $89.29 for a total of $31.3 million. There are 650,000 shares remaining on the current repurchase authorization.
“Our teams continue to execute well in a generally challenging global economic environment,” said Gordon Hunter, chief executive officer. “Our electrical business is recovering on both the top and bottom lines; automotive is beginning to make progress on its margin improvement initiatives and electronics profitability continues to be strong. Manufacturing performed well across the board, with improvements at our Piedras Negras, Mexico site particularly notable.”
Earnings for the fourth quarter of 2015 are expected to be in the range of $1.12 to $1.24 per diluted share assuming a tax rate of 24% and excluding any special items. This includes the estimated impact of $0.02 per diluted share for the extra week.
“Economic signals continue to be mixed and visibility continues to be limited,” said Hunter. “Although our 0.95 book-to-bill for electronics is better than normal for the third quarter, order rates in the first few weeks of the fourth quarter have been relatively weak. At this point, we expect normal sequential declines in both sales and margins in the fourth quarter.”
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