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PPG profit slumps 65 percent in fourth quarter

Post Time:Jan 17,2009Classify:Industry NewsView:140

PPG Industries Inc., the world's second-biggest paint maker, said fourth-quarter profit fell 65 percent because the weak global economy hurt sales of industrial coatings and glass.

Net income dropped to $71 million, or 43 cents a share, from $200 million, or $1.21, a year earlier, Pittsburgh-based PPG said Friday in a statement. Sales rose 2.7 percent to $3.19 billion.

Chief Executive Officer Charles E. Bunch is cutting jobs and reducing output because of the slowing economy, which led to losses in two units. Auto production declined about 25 percent worldwide, hurting the industrial-coatings unit, which makes car paint, and the optical unit, which makes silicas for tires and batteries, Bunch said on a call with analysts.

"I was troubled to see the optical unit had an earnings decline," Dmitry Silversteyn, an analyst at Longbow Research in Independence, Ohio, said in a phone interview. "The industrial segment was weaker." He recommends selling the shares.

PPG shares rose 2 cents to close at $41.43. Shares dropped 40 percent last year, according to a Jan. 17 Bloomberg report on TribLIVE.com.

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