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Air Products (NYSE: APD), Lehigh Valley, PA, reported first-quarter sales of $2.39 billion, an increase of 10 percent over the same period a year ago. Profit increased 17.5 percent to $296 million, excluding an after-tax charge of $27 million for costs associated with the tender offer of Airgas, Inc. (NYSE: ARG).
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Sequentially, sales increased two percent.
Merchant Gases sales of $988 million increased 6 percent versus prior year, primarily driven by Asia, which saw its highest increase in sales and volumes in recent history. Operating income of $201 million increased 6 percent. Sequentially, sales rose 4 percent.
Tonnage Gases sales of $766 million were up 10 percent on improved volumes. Operating income of $116 million increased 15 percent. Sequentially, sales were up 2 percent with volumes up 5 percent and energy and raw material cost pass-throughs lowering sales by 4 percent.
Electronics and Performance Materials sales of $526 million increased 21 percent. Electronics sales were up 30 percent, and Performance Materials sales rose 11 percent versus last year. Operating income of $69 million increased 42 percent, and sequential sales were up 1 percent.
Equipment and Energy sales of $112 million were up 3 percent. Operating income of $20 million increased significantly from the prior year on higher LNG activity.