Weyerhaeuser Co. first quarter profit rises to $183M

Nathan Andrada – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Federal Way, WA, United States (4E) – Weyerhaeuser Co. reported on Friday that its earnings climbed in the first quarter on gains from special items and improved sales from its timberlands business, despite the harsh winter weather. Earnings surpassed analysts’ projections, while revenue missed estimates.

First quarter earnings stood at $183mn, or 31 cents per share, compared with $144mn, or 26 cents per share, a year ago, according to the forest-products company. Stripping out of net gains of $30mn from some items, including an asset sale and a change to the company’s retirement plan, earnings rose 26 cents per share for the period.

Net sales climbed 1.7 percent to $1.98bn. Analysts had forecast per-share earnings of 24 cents on $2.08bn revenue.

The company’s move to shift its focus on its core wood-products business has paid off recently, as the company posted strong results with the recovery in the housing market. Revenue in the segment comes after the previous quarter’s decline with another drop during the first quarter, slipping 9 percent to $898 million.

Weyerhaeuser’s bright spot during the period came from its timberlands division, which posted a 29 percent gain in net sales to $377mn. The company’s cellulose-fibers unit reported a 2.7 decline in sales to $461mn.

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