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Grainger Q1 2016 sales increased 3 percent

Staff writer ▼ | April 19, 2016
Grainger reported results for the 2016 first quarter ended March 31, 2016. Sales of $2.5 billion increased 3% versus $2.4 billion in tQ1 2015.
Grainger   Sales for the first quarter were $2.5 billion
There were 64 selling days in the 2016 first quarter, one more than the 2015 first quarter. On a daily basis, sales in the quarter increased 1 percent versus the prior year.

Net earnings for the quarter of $187 million were down 12 percent versus $211 million in 2015. Earnings per share of $2.98 declined 3 percent versus $3.07 in 2015.

The company narrowed its 2016 sales and earnings per share guidance for the year and now expects sales growth of 0 to 6 percent and earnings per share of $11.00 to $12.80.

The company's previous 2016 guidance, communicated on January 26, 2016, was sales growth of -1 to 7 percent and earnings per share of $10.80 to $13.00.

Sales increased 3 percent and 1 percent daily in the 2016 first quarter versus the prior year. The daily sales performance included a 4 percentage point contribution from acquisitions and a 1 percentage point reduction from foreign exchange.

Excluding acquisitions and foreign exchange, organic sales declined 2 percent driven by a 3 percentage point reduction in price and a 1 percentage point reduction in sales of seasonal products, partially offset by a 2 percentage point increase from higher volume.

Company operating earnings of $317 million for the 2016 first quarter declined 10 percent versus $351 million in the 2015 quarter. The decline was driven primarily by lower gross profit margins and $19 million in restructuring charges recorded in the quarter.

The company has two reportable business segments, the United States and Canada, which represented approximately 82 percent of company sales for the quarter. The remaining operating businesses are located in Europe, Asia and Latin America. The single channel online businesses are included in Other Businesses and are not reportable segments.