KINGSPORT — Eastman Chemical Co. will beat Wall Street expectations for the third quarter this year.
The Kingsport-based company announced Thursday that third quarter 2008 earnings per share, excluding costs related to strategic actions, are expected to be above the high end of analyst estimates of $1.30 per share.
The company credited higher operating earnings primarily due to a recent decline in raw material and energy costs, higher sales revenue, and ongoing cost reductions which more than offset lower sales volume due to softening demand.
Last year, Eastman posted net earnings of $20 million or 24 cents per diluted share for the third quarter. Those results included a hit of $120 million in asset impairments and restructuring charges, primarily due to the sale of the company’s PET polymers plants in Mexico and Argentina. The third quarter 2007 results were also impacted by $9 million from continuing restructuring moves at the company’s Longview, Texas, and Columbia, S.C., operations.
Excluding one-time charges, Eastman posted earnings of $1.26 per diluted share in the third quarter 2007.
Eastman will announce third quarter 2008 sales and earnings after 5 p.m. on Oct. 23. The company will host a conference call with industry analysts at 8 a.m. the next morning. To listen to the live webcast of the conference call go to www.investors.eastman.com, Presentations.
Eastman manufactures and markets chemicals, fibers and plastics worldwide, with 2007 sales of $6.8 billion and approximately 10,500 employees. The company employs about 7,000 in Kingsport.