CLEVELAND, Jan. 26, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Applied Industrial Technologies (NYSE:AIT) today reported second quarter fiscal 2017 sales and earnings for the three months ended December 31, 2016. Net sales for the quarter were $608.1 million, a decrease of 0.4% compared with $610.3 million in the same quarter a year ago. The overall sales decrease for the quarter is impacted by one less selling day which accounts for a 1.6% decline and unfavorable foreign currency translation of 0.5%, partially offset by a 1.3% increase from acquisition-related volume and 0.4% organic growth. Net income for the quarter was $24.1 million, or $0.61 per share, compared with $23.9 million, or $0.61 per share, in the second quarter of fiscal 2016. For the six months ended December 31, 2016, sales were $1.23 billion, a decrease of 1.5% compared with $1.25 billion in the same period last year. Net income increased to $51.5 million from $48.2 million, and earnings per share increased 7.4% to $1.31 per share from $1.22 per share, last year. Commenting on the results, Applied's President & Chief Executive Officer Neil A. Schrimsher said, "Midway through our fiscal year, we are pleased with the continued operational enhancements and efficiencies throughout our organization. We are also encouraged by the improving sales per day developments and remain focused on expanding our capabilities with new and existing customers." Outlook "Entering the second half of our fiscal year, we are narrowing our earnings per share and sales guidance by raising the lower-end of the ranges," he added. The updated full-year fiscal 2017 earnings per share guidance is between $2.50 and $2.60 per share on a sales change of negative 2.0% to up 1.0%. Dividend The Company's Board of Directors increased the quarterly cash dividend to $0.29 per common share, representing the eighth dividend increase since 2010 and a cumulative increase of more than 70% in the quarterly dividend over this period. The dividend is payable on February 28, 2017, to shareholders of record on February 15, 2017.