After watching the company’s the share price tank by around -30% over the list six months, James Hardie should have received some support from the market this morning following the release of what was a strong fourth quarter result.
However, not even news of above market growth and reaffirmation of guidance could stop the building products giant from being -3.47% lower at the close.
There was a 20% lift in quarterly global net sales to US$968m, which underpinned a 24% year-on-year increase in James Hardie’s global net sales to US$3.6bn FY22.
The globally adjusted EBIT margin of 23.3% was achieved through “operational improvements and the delivery of a high value product mix, partially offset by high inflation and our ongoing reinvestment in growth initiatives," the company noted.
However, the market appears have been somewhat touchy about the group’s near-miss on consensus estimates.
What’s also likely to have played on the minds of investors’ today is the number of senior management exits since the sacking of CEO Jack Truong in January.
It’s understood that Truong had created a "hostile" work environment.
Commenting on today’s result, James Hardie interim CEO Harold Wiens notes the team "has continued to deliver strong execution of our global strategy".
This is reflected in strong price/mix growth in all three regions, including North America price/mix growth of 12%-plus, Asia Pacific price/mix growth of 11%-plus and Europe price/mix growth of 14%-plus.
“Our EBIT margin expanded 220 basis points to 29.7%, an exceptional result underpinned by delivery of a high value product mix that helped to offset high inflation and ongoing reinvestment in growth initiatives,” Wiens noted.
Highlights of the fourth quarter results included:
Globally adjusted EBIT increased 30% on the previous period to $US225.3m
Global adjusted net income increased 42 to US$177.5m
Net income for the year to $US620.7m
Net profit of $US459.1m for fiscal year 2022, up 75% on the prior year.
US30¢ second half dividend declared
Based on the continued, strong execution of the global strategy across all three regions – and largely underpinned by another strong performance in North America - management reaffirms fiscal year 2023 adjusted net income guidance range of US$740m and US$820m.
The comparable prior year adjusted net income for fiscal year 2022 was US$620.7m.
James Hardie share price over six months.
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