CHATTANOOGA, Tenn., Feb. 25, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Astec Industries, Inc. (Nasdaq:ASTE) today reported results for their fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2013. Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2013 were $223.9 million compared to $227.6 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, a 2% decrease. Earnings from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of 2013 were $8.3 million or $0.36 per diluted share compared to $5.5 million or $0.24 per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 2012, an increase of 51%. Domestic sales increased 10% to $142.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2013 from $129.0 million for the fourth quarter of 2012. International sales decreased 17% to $81.5 million for the fourth quarter of 2013 from $98.6 million for the fourth quarter of 2012. Net sales for 2013 were $933.0 million compared to $936.3million for 2012, a decrease of $3.3 million. Earnings from continuing operations for 2013 were $39.0 million or $1.69 per diluted share compared to $34.0 million or $1.48 per diluted share of 2012, a 15% increase. Domestic sales increased 5% to $599.1 million for 2013 from $572.5 million for 2012. International sales were $333.9 million for 2013 compared to $363.8 million for 2012, an 8% decrease. The Company's domestic backlog increased 28%, from $156.6 million at December 31, 2012 to $200.5 million at December 31, 2013. The international backlog at December 31, 2013 was $89.7 million compared to $107.2 million at December 31, 2012 for a decrease of 16%. Total backlog increased 10% to $290.2 million at December 31, 2013 from $263.8 million at December 31, 2012. Consolidated financial information for the quarter and year ended December 31, 2013 and additional information related to segment revenues and profits are attached as addenda to this press release. Commenting on the announcement of quarterly and annual results, Benjamin G. Brock, Chief Executive Officer, stated, "We were pleased with our bottom line results during the 4th Quarter of 2013, especially given the continued instability in the federal highway funding. On a positive note, the new turn-key wood pellet plant in Georgia is operating to our customer's satisfaction. As a result of its performance, the customer ordered an additional two lines for $40 million during the fourth quarter. In addition, our aggregate processing equipment businesses performed well. On the downside, our Underground Group, which is now focused on supplying equipment to the oil and gas drilling industry, continued to struggle in the quarter, and for the year. We believe this group has developed and is producing superior products, but is battling a soft market with low demand. We are focused on this group and working to reverse the unfavorable trends."