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Martin Marietta Materials, Inc. (NYSE:MLM) today reported its results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2013.
Ward Nye, President and CEO of Martin Marietta Materials, stated: “We are pleased to finish a successful 2013 with a solid fourth quarter. Strong performance by our Aggregates and Specialty Products businesses contributed to quarterly earnings per diluted share of $0.77, a 67% increase over the prior-year quarter. Our nonresidential and residential aggregates product line shipments experienced double-digit volume growth as a result of focused execution and our efforts to position the Company to benefit from the continued recovery in private-sector construction. The Aggregates business also achieved pricing growth in each reportable segment. When coupled with disciplined management of our cost profile and record performance by our Specialty Products business, this led to an incremental consolidated gross margin (excluding freight and delivery revenues) for the quarter of 69%. Notably, our consolidated gross margin (excluding freight and delivery revenues) expanded 380 basis points.
“The Aggregates business reported a 3.4% quarterly increase in aggregates product line pricing and notable growth in both pricing and volume in the ready mixed concrete product line, which led to a 7% increase in net sales and a 250-basis-point improvement in gross margin (excluding freight and delivery revenues). Aggregates product line shipments were down slightly compared with the prior-year quarter, as volume growth in the private-sector was offset by decreased shipments to the public-sector. Net sales for the Specialty Products business increased 15%, reflecting the Woodville, Ohio kiln expansion in the dolomitic lime business, marketing initiatives in the chemicals business and sound pricing gains in key product lines.
“As we begin 2014, we are encouraged by numerous macro-economic indicators, including employment growth, which suggest increased construction activity going forward. We expect private-sector construction to benefit from significant shale energy projects, improvements in general nonresidential construction and further recovery in the housing market. Additionally, we also foresee some modest growth in public sector projects. Following years of underinvestment at the federal level, growth in state-level infrastructure funding initiatives should stimulate public-sector activity. In summary, we believe we are well positioned to capture these opportunities across our markets and build on the momentum created throughout 2013,” Nye said.