Grace quarterly earnings rise 6.9% despite weak economy

February 03, 2010

Chemical maker W.R. Grace said quarterly earnings increased 6.9 percent as it cut costs and improved profit margins despite operating under bankruptcy in a weak economy. The Columbia-based company, which has about 1,100 workers in the area, posted net income of $46.4 million, or 63 cents per share, for the quarter ended Dec. 31. That was compared to $43.4 million, or 60 cents per share, for the same period a year ago. The company attributed positive earnings to cost-cutting and realignment of its product portfolio. Sales fell 12 percent to $678.3 million because of consolidation of joint venture Advanced Refining Technologies. The company, which hopes to come out of bankruptcy by the end of second quarter, said that the exact timing is uncertain as it awaits court approval.

- Andrea K. Walker

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