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Anixter International, Glenview, IL (NYSE: AXE), a distributor of communication and security products, electrical and electronic wire and cable, fasteners and other small parts, reported sales for the first quarter 2012 were up 4 percent to $1.52 billion. Profit was $55.6 million.
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Major items affecting current quarter sales included $14.6 million from copper pricing and $12.2 million from foreign exchange rates. Organic sales growth – excluding these items – was 5 percent.
Robert Eck, president and CEO, said: "After the expected slow start in both cabling businesses in the first two months of the quarter, sales and bookings improved nicely in the month of March, resulting in our ninth consecutive quarter of growth across the business. While our year-on-year growth rate slowed slightly for the full quarter due to a strong comparative period in the first quarter of 2011, combined with weaker project billings and unfavorable currency and copper effects, our momentum exiting the quarter was very solid.
"Our strategic growth initiatives combined with strong day-to-day execution continue to drive our success in each of our end-markets around the world. As expected, these efforts have once again helped bolster our sales performance in Emerging Markets, which delivered the highest year-on-year organic sales growth rate among our geographic reporting segments at 7 percent. Within our end-markets, the OEM Supply business delivered the highest sales growth rate with 12 percent improvement year-on-year. Despite a slowdown in billings due to project delays in both cabling businesses, Electrical Wire & Cable and Enterprise Cabling delivered 6 percent and 3 percent organic sales growth, respectively."