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The commercial coatings group of PPG Industries’ (PPG - Analyst Report) automotive refinish business has entered into an agreement with Van Nay, LLC to expand its Electrolysis Corrosion Kontrol (ECK) corrosion-prevention product line that has been distributed by PPG. The company will now be offering a full line of ECK products, including both quart and aerosol versions to the existing squeeze tubes that it offered earlier.

ECK products are built with a patented compound that helps to avoid expensive repairs caused by dissimilar metal corrosion in an economical way. Aluminum products assembled with stainless-steel fasteners are naturally prone to corrosion. ECK coatings which are rich in zinc prevent the electrolytic reaction, thus providing a long-lasting, moisture-resistant barrier.

ECK coatings are better than the traditional corrosion prevention methods that use silicone-based products and plastic insulating tape applications. ECK coatings can be applied on heavy-duty truck bodies, military vehicles, trailers, agricultural and construction equipment and have a variety of other metallic usage. Bolts and fasteners can be prevented from galling and seizing with the usage of ECK coatings.

PPG Industries released its fourth-quarter 2013 results on Jan 16. The company reported adjusted earnings from continuing operations (excluding acquisition-related expenses of $4 million or 3 cents per share) of $1.81 a share for the quarter, up 45% year over year from $1.25 per share reported in the year-ago quarter. The results exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.73 per share.

Profit from continued operations (as reported) was $254 million or $1.78 per share in the fourth quarter, surging roughly 33% from $191 million or $1.23 per share posted in the prior-year quarter. Healthy results in the fourth quarter were also backed by continuing operating and cost discipline coupled with a higher level of organic sales growth.
Revenues rose 14% year over year to $3,702 million in the quarter from $3,243 million in the year-ago quarter and were also ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,698 million. The year-over-year rise is attributable to higher industry demand in aerospace and automotive OEM coatings. The results were also aided by stabilizing regional demand in Europe.

PPG Industries is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock.

Other companies in the chemical industry worth considering include Methanex Corp. (MEOH - Analyst Report), Northern Technologies International Corp. and The Dow Chemical Co. (DOW - Analyst Report). While both Methanex and Northern Technologies carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Dow Chemical holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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