Lear sales, profits slump, outlook cut

SOUTHFIELD — Lear Corp. (NYSE: LEA), the supplier of automotive seating and electrical and electronic systems, reported net income of $252.5 million or $3.80 a share for the third quarter ended Sept. 29, down from $295.2 million or $3.96 a share a year earlier.

Revenue was $4.89 billion, down from $4.98 billion a year earlier.

For the nine months, net income was $937.6 million, up from $912.9 million a year eralier. Revenue was $16.21 billion, up from $15.1 billion a year earlier.

“We again delivered strong sales and earnings results in the third quarter in the face of challenging macroeconomic conditions marked by significant volume declines, particularly in China and Europe, as well as foreign exchange volatility,” said Ray Scott, Lear’s president and CEO. “We have continued to demonstrate our strong execution capabilities, and we remain excited about the opportunities that lie ahead. We will continue to focus on investing in profitable growth, further improving operational efficiencies and delivering superior value for our shareholders.”

The company also adjusted its full year 2018 financial outlook downward, to sales of between $21 billion and $21.2 billion, from a prior outlook of $21.8 billion to $22 billion, and adjusted net income of $1.19 billion to $1.21 billion, from a prior outlook of $1.25 billion to $1.27 billion.

Excluding the impact of foreign exchange, sales were flat, reflecting lower production volumes on key Lear platforms, offset by the addition of new business in both product segments and the sales impact of obtaining control of certain affiliates. Sales for the E-Systems and Seating segments were up 9 percent and down 5 percent, respectively. Excluding the impact of foreign exchange, sales for the E-Systems and Seating segments were up 10 percent and down 3 percent, respectively.

During the third quarter of 2018, Lear repurchased approximately 1.1 million shares of our common stock for a total of $195 million. As of the end of the third quarter, Lear had a remaining share repurchase authorization of $1.0 billion, which equates to approximately 11 percent of its total market capitalization at current market prices.

Since initiating the share repurchase program in early 2011, Lear has repurchased 46.8 million shares of common stock for a total of $4 billion at an average price of $85.62 per share. This represents a reduction of approximately 44 percent of its shares outstanding since 2011.

To listen to a replay of a conference call discussing these results at the investor relations link of www.lear.com.

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