CEO says results came in as expected
Albemarle Corp., of Baton Rouge, reported Wednesday that its third-quarter earnings fell to $90.5 million, or $1.11 per share, compared with $109.5 million, or $1.22 per share, a year ago.
The specialty chemicals maker’s sales dipped to $648.6 million, down from $661.2 million a year ago.
Stock analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters forecast earnings of $1.06 per share on sales of $642.8 million.
The company said its results were affected by its exit from the phosphorus flame-retardants business, a 10 percent drop in the catalysts segment sales and low prices for bromines.
Bromines are used in flame retardants, medication, water treatment chemicals, perfumes and dyes.
Albemarle said those impacts were partly offset by higher sales in the polymer solutions and fine chemistry segments.
Polymer solutions sales rose 3 percent to $224.3 million, overcoming lower prices for flame retardants. Fine chemistry sales also increased 3 percent to $198.3 million.
The third-quarter results came in about as expected, Albemarle Chief Executive Officer Luke Kissam said.
The company improved its sales of refinery catalysts and custom services. Sales of well completion fluids, used to control a well in case of equipment failure, also remained strong.
Albemarle’s corporate and other expenses increased to $8.8 million, up $5.2 million from a year earlier.
The increase was mainly the result of higher pension and other post-employment benefits, other personnel costs and higher fees for services.
Albemarle reported its earnings after the markets closed. The company’s stock ended the session at $64.42, up 18 cents.