Dow Earnings Rise Despite Sales Decline

MIDLAND — Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW) Thursday reported second quarter net income of $1.14 billion or 97 cents a share, up from $882 million or 73 cents a share a year earlier.

Revenue was $12.91 billion, down from $14.92 billion a year earlier.

For the six months, net income was $2.53 billion or $2.15 a year, up from $1.85 billion or $1.52 a share last year. First half revenue was $25.28 billion, down from $29.38 billion in the first half of 2014.

Results in the quarter were impacted by a $375 million pre-tax charge, or 21 cents a share, associated with the previously announced restructuring program, costs related to portfolio and productivity actions of 3 cents a share, and the favorable impact of 30 cents a share related to the consolidation of Univation Technologies LLC.

The company said most of the sales decline was driven by currency translations and a declining price of oil. Sales were up 4 percent from the first quarter, with gains across all geographic areas. Sales increases were led by China (up 14 percent) and the United States (up 6 percent).

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose to $2.4 billion, up $210 million vs. the year-ago period. Gains were led by Dow’s Performance Plastics, Performance Materials & Chemicals and Agricultural Sciences business units.

Year-to-date, cash from operations was $2.7 billion, up $700 million versus the same period last year. On the same basis, Dow has returned $1.5 billion to shareholders through declared dividends and share repurchases.

Agricultural Sciences reported second quarter sales of $1.7 billion. Volume growth was achieved in Europe, Middle East, Africa and India and Asia Pacific but was more than offset by lower demand in Latin America and North America. Operating EBITDA for the segment was $269 million, up 8 percent from $249 million in the year-ago period – as a result of productivity actions as well as a gain related to the sale of a product line.

Consumer Solutions reported second quarter sales of $1.1 billion, as sales gains in North America were more than offset by declines in Asia Pacific and EMEAI. Operating EBITDA for the segment was $236 million, down from $263 million in the year-ago period.

Infrastructure Solutions reported second quarter sales of $2 billion, reflecting headwinds from price and currency. Operating EBITDA for the segment was $267 million, down from $310 million in the year-ago period – reflecting the continued trough in acrylic acid supply/demand dynamics and weakness in the energy industry.

Performance Materials & Chemicals reported second quarter sales of $3.2 billion, as pricing impacts and currency headwinds offset overall increased demand. Operating EBITDA for the segment was $572 million, up 28 percent from $447 million in the year-ago period – reflecting solid demand and margin expansion from productivity, price volume management and lower costs.

Performance Plastics reported second quarter sales of $4.8 billion. Excluding Hydrocarbons and Energy, volume gains in all geographic areas were more than offset by lower global pricing and currency headwinds in EMEAI. Operating EBITDA for the segment was $1.2 billion, up 15 percent from $1 billion in the year-ago period, a second quarter segment record.

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