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CarTech expecting sharp earnings boost

Keywords: Tags  Carpenter Technologies, CarTech, earnings forecast, William A. Wulfsohn, Daniel Fitzgerald

NEW YORK — Carpenter Technology Corp. expects its full-year operating earnings in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2013, to be 20 to 30 percent higher than in the previous fiscal year, although the company identified “uncertainty in demand for lower-value mill products” as a challenge.

The projected earnings increase is being driven "primarily by the acquisition of Latrobe Specialty Metals Inc. (, April 25), which is delivering higher-than-expected synergies and improved overall pricing/mix actions," the company said. The earnings target excludes the anticipated financial impact of selling the Latrobe distribution business.

The Wyomissing, Pa.-based stainless steel and titanium alloy producer said it expects net sales (excluding surcharges) to total $431 million in its fiscal second quarter ended Dec. 31, up 30 percent from $330.3 million in the same period a year earlier but down from $441 million in its fiscal first quarter ended Sept. 30. It attributed the anticipated quarter-on-quarter drop to "weaker Performance Engineered Products (PEP) segment performance, softer demand for lower-value mill products and the impact of production balancing within Specialty Alloys Operations."

Carpenter anticipates fiscal second-quarter operating earnings of 61 to 62 cents per diluted share, about 20 percent higher than a year earlier.

"We continue to see strong end-market demand for our premium and ultra-premium products where we remain capacity-constrained, and (we) are delivering above-target near-term Latrobe synergies," president and chief executive officer William A. Wulfsohn said in a statement. However, "we ... are performing below plan in the PEP business segment."

Carpenter is scheduled to report its fiscal second-quarter results Jan. 31.

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