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Fastenal Company Reports 2012 Third Quarter Earnings

The best way to understand the change in our industrial production business is to examine the results in our fastener product line. In the first three months of 2012, the daily sales growth in our fastener product line was approximately 15.4%. This dropped to 10.5%, 6.1%, and 8.6% in April, May, and June, respectively, and averaged 6.0% in the third quarter. By contrast, the best way to understand the change in the maintenance portion of the manufacturing business is to examine the results in our non-fastener product lines. In the first three months of 2012, the daily sales growth in our non-fastener business was approximately 25.1%. This dropped to 24.4%, 19.0%, and 19.6% in April, May, and June, respectively, and averaged 18.0% in the third quarter.

The patterns related to the industrial production business, as noted above, are influenced by the movements noted in the Purchasing Manufacturers Index ('PMI') published by the Institute for Supply Management ( http://www.ism.ws/), which is a composite index of economic activity in the manufacturing sector. The PMI in 2012, 2011, and 2010 was as follows:

  Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May June July Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2012 54.1 52.4 53.4 54.8 53.5 49.7 49.8 49.6 51.5      
2011 59.9 59.8 59.7 59.7 54.2 55.8 51.4 52.5 52.5 51.8 52.2 53.1
2010 56.7 55.8 59.3 59.0 58.8 56.0 55.7 57.4 56.4 57.0 58.0 57.3

Our non-residential construction customers have historically represented 20% to 25% of our business. The daily sales to these customers grew or contracted in the first, second, third, and fourth quarters (when compared to the same quarter in the previous year), and for the year, as follows:

  Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Annual
2012 17.1% 12.7% 8.2%    
2011 17.7% 15.8% 15.8% 17.4% 17.1%
2010 -14.7% 0.5% 6.3% 10.3% -0.3%

A graph of the sequential daily sales trends to these two end markets in 2012, 2011, and 2010, starting with a base of '100' in the previous October and ending with the next October, would be as follows:  https://media.globenewswire.com/cache/11647/file/16062.pdf

GROWTH DRIVERS OF OUR BUSINESS

We grow by continuously adding customers and by increasing the activity with each customer. We believe this growth is enhanced by our close proximity to our customers, which allows us to provide a range of services and product availability that our competitors can't easily match. Historically, we expanded our reach by opening stores at a very fast pace. These openings were initially in the United States, but expanded beyond the United States beginning in the mid 1990's. 

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