Stockholm, Sweden — Larger major appliances from Sweden received good reviews in the third quarter, with Electrolux reporting shipments of core appliances to North America increased 9 percent in the period, compared with the same quarter a year earlier.
Spearheaded by room air conditioners and microwave ovens, sales of major appliances also enjoyed 'good growth' in North America during the third quarter, Electrolux reported.
Total Electrolux North American sales of consumer durables reached $1.44 billion in the third quarter, moving up from the $1.40 billion recorded in the year-ago period.
However, operating income for consumer durables during the third quarter slipped to $69.8 million, down from the $74 million reported in the same three months in 2002. Profit margin for the quarter decreased from 5.3 percent to 4.9 percent.
In the first nine months, Electrolux said U.S. industry shipments of core appliances increased in volume by about 3 percent. Shipments of major appliances also increased by 9 percent in the same time frame.
Total North American sales of consumer durables to North America in the first nine months hit $4.7 billion, down from the $5 billion recorded year over year.
Operating income for consumer durables in North America dropped to $317.8 million for the nine months, down from $358.1 million in the year-ago period. Profit margin for the nine months fell from 7.1 percent to 6.8 percent.
Third quarter demand for floor-care products is estimated to have been flat to slightly up in the United States, Electrolux said.
Third quarter consolidated sales decreased 4.3 percent, down to $3.9 billion, from $4.1 billion in the year-ago period.
Net income, excluding special items, dropped 6.3 percent, to $146.9 million, compared with $156.8 million year on year. Net income, including special items, was off 38.1 percent, to $98.4 million, down from $159 million in the same quarter last year. Electrolux recorded a charge of $48.5 million in the three months.
For the year to date, Electrolux sales dropped 6.6 percent, to $12.3 billion, down from the $13.2 billion reported in the same time frame a year ago.
Net income for the nine months, excluding special items, decreased 6.9 percent, to $513.4 million, compared with $551.7 million in the same period in 2002. Net income for the same period, including special items, slid 40.1 percent, down to $464.9 million, compared with $776.3 million year over year.
Looking ahead, Electrolux expects market demand for appliances in the fourth quarter to be flat or slightly up in North America, compared with the last quarter of 2002.