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Whirpool Q2 Net Earnings Increase

7/24/2003 08:42:00 AM Eastern

Benton Harbor - Solid contributions from global businesses and new product introductions pushed up second quarter sales at Whirlpool 9 percent, to just under $3 billion, compared with $2.7 billion in the year-ago period.

Excluding consolidated sales from Whirlpool's 2002 acquisitions and currency translations, net sales increased 2 percent.

Buoyed by savings from its restructuring program, Whirlpool net earnings, including special items, climbed to $94 million in the second quarter, up from $63 million in the same three months last year.

'This performance reflects the solid contributions from our global businesses and brands, including the introductions of innovative new products worldwide,' said David Whitwam, chairman/CEO.

'The results also demonstrate the positive impact from continuous improvements in productivity and from actions we are taking to align the company's cost structure with current economic and industry conditions,' said Whitwam.

Second quarter earnings for the majap maker include a previously announced gain of $13.5 million and also reflect after-tax charges of $11 million. The three-month earnings include a restructuring and related charge of $19 million and an asset write-down of $22 million after tax.

Operating profit of $195 million in the second quarter, including charges, topped the $188 million mark recorded in the same three months in 2002.

For the first six months, Whirlpool sales hit $5.7 billion, up from $5.3 million year-on-year.

Net income for the first half reached $185 million, compared to a net loss of $465 million in the same six months a year earlier.

Operating profit for the current six months came in at $384 million, compared with $372 million in the first half of 2002.

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