News Digest 5002


Ohio Transmission Corporation, Columbus, Ohio, has acquired Laron Inc., Kingman, Arizona, a leading service provider of mechanical and electric motor repair and engineering in the southwestern United States.  More.

MSC Industrial Direct Co. Inc., Melville, New York, reported fiscal 2020 first quarter sales of $823.6 billion, a 1% decrease compared to fiscal 2019. Annual profit was $65.4 million, a 11.8% decrease compared with the first quarter last year. More.

Fastenal Co., Winona, Minnesota, reported sales of $1.28 billion for the fourth quarter of 2019, a 3.7% increase over the same period in 2018. The distributor reported net earnings of $178.7 million, a 5.9% increase over the year-ago period. For the full year, Fastenal reported sales of $5.3 billion, up 7.4% compared to 2018. Net earnings for the year rose 5.2%, to $790.9 million. More.

Motion Industries, Birmingham, Alabama, a subsidiary of Genuine Parts Company, has named Chris Pacer to vice president of the company’s newly formed Central Group. More.

Grainger, Chicago, has announced that David Rawlinson, senior vice president and president, Grainger Online Business, will be leaving the company effective February 1, 2020, to become the CEO of a newly formed public company.  More.


Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 145,000 in December, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.5%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Notable job gains occurred in retail trade and health care, while mining lost jobs. Manufacturing employment was down by 12,000. Employment in the industry changed little in 2019, growing by 46,000, after increasing in 2018 by 264,000. More.

Industrial production declined 0.3% in December, as a decrease of 5.6% for utilities outweighed increases of 0.2% for manufacturing and 1.3% for mining, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve.  More.

Led by declines in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) fell to 0.35 ;in December from +0.41 in November. Three of the our broad categories of indicators that make up the index decreased from November, and three of the four categories made negative contributions to the index in December. The index's three-month moving average, CFNAI-MA3, moved up to 0.23 in December from 0.31 in November. More.


Eaton has entered into an agreement to sell its Hydraulics business to Danfoss A/S, a Danish industrial company, for $3.3 billion in cash — a 13.2 multiple of 2019 EBITDA. More.

Acuity Brands Inc., Atlanta, reported fiscal 2020 first-quarter sales of $834.7 million, down 10.5% compared to the year-ago period. Net income decreased 28.4% to $57 million. More.

Fortive Corp., Everett, Washington, has announced that the name of the new global industrial company which is expected to separate from Fortive later this year will be Vontier Corporation.  More.

Builders FirstSource Inc., Dallas, has announced that CEO Chad Crow will retire this year after 20 years with the company. The Builders FirstSource Board of Directors said it has retained a leading global executive search firm to help identify a highly-qualified leader for the CEO position. More.

Acuity Brands Inc., Atlanta, has named Neil M. Ashe as its next president and CEO, effective Jan. 31, 2020.  The Board of Directors also appointed Ashe as a member of the Board.  More.

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