Koppers Holdings Inc. (KOP - Free Report) recorded profits (attributable to the company) from continuing operations of $1.9 million or 9 cents per share for first-quarter 2020, compared with a profit of $9.8 million or 47 cents a year ago.
Barring one-time items, earnings were 47 cents per share for the quarter, down from 55 cents a year ago. Earnings were in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate.
Koppers recorded revenues of $401.9 million for the quarter, up around 7% year over year and in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Sales rose roughly 8% barring an unfavorable foreign currency translation impact of $6.3 million.
Sales from the Railroad and Utility Products and Services segment went up around 14% year over year to $190 million in the quarter. The growth was supported by higher volumes in Class I & commercial crosstie markets and utility pole markets as well as favorable pricing in commercial crosstie that more than offset reduced demand in maintenance-of-way businesses and unfavorable currency.
The Performance Chemicals unit recorded sales of $111.4 million in the quarter, up around 13% year over year. Sales were driven by increased demand for copper-based preservatives in North America as well as volumes from new customers that more than offset reduced demand in Europe and unfavorable currency.
Sales from the Carbon Materials and Chemicals division fell around 10% to $100.5 million. Sales were impacted by reduced global pricing of carbon pitch and lower sales volumes of carbon pitch in North America.
Koppers ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $54.2 million, up around 42% year over year. Long-term debt was $943 million, down around 6% year over year.
Koppers, in April 2020, withdrew its earlier communicated guidance for 2020 due to uncertainties associated with the scope, duration and impacts of the coronavirus outbreak.
Koppers, in February 2020, agreed to sell Koppers (Jiangsu) Carbon Chemical Company Limited (“KJCC”) to Fangda Carbon New Material Co., Ltd. and C-Chem Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of Nippon Steel Chemical & Material Co., Ltd. The total sale price for the transaction is $107 million, subject to adjustments. Koppers expects to realize around $65 million of net cash, after taxes and expenses. It plans to apply the proceeds to reduce debt.
Shares of Koppers have lost 48.5% over a year, compared with the industry’s 24.3% decline.
Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Koppers currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).
Better-ranked stocks worth considering in the basic materials space are Equinox Gold Corp. (EQX - Free Report) , The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (SMG - Free Report) and Newmont Corporation (NEM - Free Report) .
Equinox Gold has a projected earnings growth rate of 231% for the current year. The company’s shares have rallied roughly 44% in a year. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Scotts Miracle-Gro has an expected earnings growth rate of 17.7% for the current fiscal year. The company’s shares have gained roughly 58% in the past year. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
Newmont has a projected earnings growth rate of 85.6% for the current year. The company’s shares have surged around 104% in a year. It currently has a Zacks Rank #2.
Just Released: Zacks’ 7 Best Stocks for Today
Experts extracted 7 stocks from the list of 220 Zacks Rank #1 Strong Buys that has beaten the market more than 2X over with a stunning average gain of +24.1% per year.
These 7 were selected because of their superior potential for immediate breakout.
See these time-sensitive tickers now >>