Environmental Elements expects loss

September 11, 1992|By Timothy J. Mullaney | Timothy J. Mullaney,Staff Writer

Environmental Elements Corp. announced yesterday that it would lose money for the last nine months of its fiscal year, blaming its weakened prospects on the sour economy and the fact that utilities have been slow to place orders for anti-pollution equipment.

The company said in July that it expected to make money in the last nine months of its fiscal year, which ends in March. The company lost $1.7 million, or 26 cents a share, in the quarter that ended in June because of technical problems on a contract that involved installing new technology, company spokesman John S. Lalley Jr. said.

He said the loss for the rest of the year would be smaller than its first-quarter loss.

"We're looking at in the neighborhood of break-even on a pretax basis" for the last nine months, he said.

Mr. Lalley added that utilities have been hesitant to order pollution control equipment because they are still trying to figure out how best to comply with regulations emerging from the 1990 Clean Air Act.

The company's other big customers are mostly industrial firms, he said, and orders from them have been slow because of the soft economy.

Mr. Lalley said Environmental Elements, a Baltimore-based designer, maker and installer of custom pollution-control equipment, has been landing small contracts since July. Ordinarily, a contract might range from $2 million to $20 million, he said.

"They've been more in the $3 [million] to $5 million range than $15 million to $20 million," he said.

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