International Paper Reports Solid Q4 Results, Record Operating Earnings

Printing Papers operating profits were $143 million (a loss of $47 million after special items) in the fourth quarter of 2013 versus $144 million ($93 million including special items) in the third quarter of 2013. North America experienced fixed cost penalties and lower sales volumes resulting from Courtland’s partial shutdown in the quarter, partly offset by lower maintenance outages and improved sales price/mix. Brazil’s results improved largely driven by higher volume and better mix from seasonally stronger demand. Europe was negatively impacted by higher outages, while India improved with stronger prices and volume, along with no maintenance outages in fourth quarter of 2013.

Consumer Packaging operating profits were $32 million ($30 million including special items) in the fourth quarter of 2013 compared with $73 million (before and after special items) in the third quarter of 2013. Significant planned maintenance outage expenses and lower volume more than offset the impact of improved pricing.

xpedx, the company’s North American distribution business, reported operating profits of $5 million (a loss of $397 million including special items) in the fourth quarter of 2013 as lower demand impacted results, compared with $19 million ($13 million including special items) in the third quarter of 2013.

International Paper recorded Ilim joint venture equity losses of $12 million in the fourth quarter of 2013, compared with equity earnings of $11 million in the third quarter of 2013. The company recognized an after-tax foreign exchange loss of $6 million in the fourth quarter of 2013 compared with an after-tax gain of $8 million in the third quarter of 2013 due to foreign exchange movement in the U.S. dollar versus the Russian ruble. The impact in both quarters was due to non-cash adjustments associated with the Ilim Group joint venture’s U.S. dollar denominated debt.

Corporate items net, for the 2013 fourth quarter were income of $6 million compared with expenses of $13 million in the third quarter of 2013.

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