The Toro Company (NYSE: TTC) today reported net earnings of $40.5 million, or $0.67 per share, on a net sales increase of 0.6 percent to $504.1 million for its fiscal third quarter ended August 3, 2012. In the comparable fiscal 2011 period, the company delivered net earnings of $35.1 million, or $0.55 per share, on net sales of $501 million.
For the first nine months, Toro reported net earnings of $129.3 million, or $2.13 per share, on a net sales increase of 6.8 percent to $1,619.4 million. In the comparable fiscal 2011 period, the company posted net earnings of $112.6 million, or $1.76 per share, on net sales of $1,515.9 million.
Earnings per share figures for all periods reported have been adjusted to reflect the effects of a 2-for-1 stock split effective June 29, 2012.
“In May, we anticipated a slowdown in the second half of our fiscal year due to a more challenging economic environment and the impact the early start to spring had on the business. What we didn’t predict was the worst drought in over 50 years,” said Michael J. Hoffman, Toro’s chairman and chief executive officer. “We were still able to deliver favorable third quarter results in comparison to last year, but the combined impact of economic and weather conditions resulted in additional slowing of retail momentum and an increase in field inventory.”“Despite the recent drought conditions, there continues to be many positives in our businesses. Our market positions remain strong, benefitting from a strong portfolio of new products. Year-to-date retail continues to be ahead of last year for many of our businesses including golf and micro irrigation. Even walk power mower sales are ahead of last year. And our internal focus on quality, cost and productivity helped deliver improved operating performance.” “Given the effects of recent weather conditions, the ongoing economic struggles in Europe, and the desire to right size field inventory levels, we are adjusting our fourth quarter guidance as we prepare the company for a successful 2013.”