General Cable Corp. (NYSE: BGC), Highland Heights, KY, reported sales for the first quarter of $1.5 billion, up 7 percent over first quarter 2012. The diversified industrial company recorded a net loss for the period of $44.4 million, compared with year-ago profit of $24.1 million.
Volume based on metal pounds sold increased 20 percent principally due to the impact of acquisitions, a growing construction products business in North America and ongoing strength in North American aerial transmission product shipments.
In North America, volume decreased 4 percent compared to the first quarter of 2012 and was down 6 percent sequentially. The year-over-year volume decline principally reflects the relatively strong demand for utility cables experienced in the first quarter of 2012, which benefitted from a relatively mild winter and wind farm projects. Excluding volume attributable to the company’s utility businesses, volume increased 12 percent, principally due to a growing construction products business.
In ROW, volume decreased 22 percent in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012 and was down 13 percent sequentially when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012. Year over year, demand strength in Asia Pacific driven by construction activity in Thailand and the Philippines was more than offset by lower unit volume in Latin America.
In Europe and Mediterranean, volume decreased 5 percent in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012 and was up 2 percent sequentially when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012. Year over year demand weakness in most major markets in Europe was partially offset by stronger electric utility product shipments in the Mediterranean.