*NEWS*KODAK POSTS Q1 LOSS OF $114Million

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*NEWS*KODAK POSTS Q1 LOSS OF $114Million

 user 2008-05-01 at 2:18:25 pm Views: 64
  • #19560
    http://www.reuters.com/article/ousiv/idUSN0129253420080501
    Kodak posts wider-than-expected quarterly loss
    May 
    2008 – Eastman Kodak Co  posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss
    on Thursday as higher silver and aluminum costs and increased spending
    on its inkjet printer business weighed on margins.

    Shares fell more than 5 percent.
    Kodak,
    the top maker of photographic film, has completed the major elements of
    an expensive transformation into a smaller company that focuses on
    digital photography products and services.It reported a first-quarter
    loss of $114 million, or 40 cents a share, compared with a loss of $175
    million, or 61 cents a share, a year earlier.Excluding special items,
    the company’s lost 39 cents a share, far more than the loss of 6 cents
    a share expected by Wall Street analysts, according to Reuters
    Estimates. Estimates of four analysts ranged from a loss of 18 cents to
    a profit of 7 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.Kodak said revenue
    rose 1 percent to $2.09 billion, while gross profit margin slipped to
    20.3 percent from 20.6 percent in the year-ago period, on significant
    increases in silver, aluminum and other raw materials costs.

    Analyst
    Shannon Cross called the margins “the lowest level seen historically”
    and noted that commodity prices played a large part, particularly at
    Kodak’s commercial printing unit, which reported an operating loss of
    $1 million even as sales rose 4 percent.”Their commercial print
    business … has never had a loss — that was supposed to be one of the
    crown jewels,” she said. “Its commodities (that hurt it) and investment
    in their new inkjet business, and they weren’t able to offset it.”The
    raw materials are used in the making of such Kodak products as
    traditional film and plates for commercial printers.Spot silver prices
    were significantly higher in the first quarter — reaching a 27-year
    high in March — driven by strong investment demand and the strength of
    gold and other hard assets. Prices have cooled in recent weeks but
    remain higher than one year ago.Similarly, demand for aluminum is
    robust globally with brisk business from a number of industrial
    sectors. Aluminum inventories are expected to remain at low
    levels.Kodak reaffirmed its forecast for 2008 of total revenue growth
    in the range of flat to 2 percent. The company reported revenue of
    $10.301 billion in 2007Kodak shares fell $1.04 percent to $16.85 on the
    New York Stock Exchange.