|$ in millions except per share amounts|
|Quarter Ended||Year Ended|
|Dec 27,||Dec 28,||%||Dec 27,||Dec 28,||%|
|Diluted Net Earnings per Common Share||$||0.71||$||0.68||4||%||$||3.36||$||2.42||39||%|
- Cash flow from operations of $243 million was 28 percent higher than last year. The Company applied $148 million of cash to the reduction of long-term debt and returned $129 million to investors through dividends and Company stock repurchases.
- Fourth quarter sales increased in all regions, including double-digit percentage growth in Asia Pacific. Sales for the quarter increased in Contractor and Industrial segments while Lubrication segment sales declined slightly.
- Sales of $1.1 billion for the year were 9 percent higher than last year, led by a double-digit percentage increase in the Contractor segment and solid growth in the Industrial segment.
- Gross margin rates remained strong at 54 percent for the quarter and 55 percent for the year.
- General and administrative expenses for the year decreased $15 million including a $14 million decrease in acquisition and divestiture costs.
- Other expense (income) included dividend income received from the Liquid Finishing businesses held as a cost-method investment. Dividends were $4 million for the quarter in both 2013 and 2012 and $28 million for the year, up from $12 million last year.
- The effective income tax rate in 2013 reflected the favorable effects of higher after-tax dividend income from Liquid Finishing and renewal of the federal R&D credit.
- Changes in currency translation rates did not have a significant effect on consolidated operating results. Favorable effects of rate changes in EMEA offset unfavorable effects in Asia Pacific.