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Mueller hopeful for construction sector recovery

Keywords: Tags  Mueller Industries, copper, aluminum, earnings report, rod, tubing, fittings, construction Greg Christopher

NEW YORK — Copper, aluminum and plastics manufacturer Mueller Industries Inc. sees the housing and commercial construction industry gaining positive momentum.

Mueller, which is "significantly dependant on the housing and commercial construction industry," is optimistic about 2013 as these industries are recovering, chief executive officer Greg Christopher said in a statement. "After more than five years of decline and stagnation, the industry finally appears to be gaining positive momentum. We look forward to the anticipated recovery years with optimism."

The rod, tube and fittings producer posted fourth-quarter net income of nearly $16.37 million, up 26.6 percent from $12.93 million in the same period a year earlier, on sales that inched up 2.6 percent to $504 million.

But full-year net income slipped 4.5 percent to $82.4 million from $86.32 million in 2011 as sales slid 9.4 percent to $2.19 billion. The Memphis, Tenn.-based producer attributed the sales decline to lower copper prices, which averaged $3.61 per pound in 2012 vs. $4.01 the previous year.

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