Power tool manufacturer Black & Decker
Black & Decker posted a 72% increase in profits for the first quarter, triggered by robust power tool and plumbing business. Net profit totaled $148 million, or $1.79 per share.
Now a good chunk of that was attributed to a favorable insurance settlement, but even if you include just earnings from continuing operations, the company still managed to increase net income by over 42% to $1.36 per share. As you may remember, it was just a couple of weeks ago that the company got investors charged up by raising expectations to between $1.33 and $1.35 per share.
Its sales also came in ahead of its lofty estimates, totaling $1.52 billion. Power tools and accessories, which comprise the company's biggest division, increased sales by 50% on the strength of its popular Dewalt brand. Its Price Pfister plumbing products grew sales by 25%, helping pull revenue for its hardware and home improvement business 9% higher.
Also, its favorable insurance settlement -- along with some help from improved profits -- allowed the company to increase free cash flow by $118 million in the quarter.
Looking ahead, Black & Decker expects second-quarter earnings of $1.73 to $1.78 per share. For the year, it predicts earnings per share of $6.55 to $6.70. That gives it a relatively cheap forward P/E of about 12.5.
My only concern with the company is my belief that it can't possibly continue to ratchet up such gains. Coming up against tough comparisons could pose some challenges for the company. However, with a fair price, a plethora of recognizable products, and high but attainable estimates, Black & Decker isn't yet showing signs of running out of power.
Fool contributor Mike Cianciolo welcomes feedback and doesn't own shares of Black & Decker.