August 1, 2014 at 12:51 pm

American Axle reports Q2 earnings of $52.2M

American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. said Friday its second quarter net income was $52.2 million or 67 cents a share, significantly higher than earnings in the year ago period, but fell slightly short of analysts’ expectations.

The Detroit-based automotive supplier earned $25.8 million or 34 cents a share in the 2013 second quarter. Analysts were expecting average earnings of 72 cents per share in second quarter 2014.

The company cut its sales expectations for the year to $3.7 billion, from the $3.75 billion to $3.8 billion it had predicted in February. The supplier told analysts in a call Friday that weakness in Brazil and Thailand led to the revision.

Still, Chief Financial Officer Michael Simonte said American Axle expects sales will be up by about $500 million for the year, a 16 percent increase over 2013.

“It’s going to be a great year for our company,” he told analysts Friday.

American Axle said it expects $4 billion in sales for 2015; the supplier in February had said it expected to exceed $4 billion in sales in 2015.

The company’s stock was trading down more than 7 percent mid-day Friday. It had closed at $18.39 a share Thursday.

American Axle sales in the second quarter rose 18.4 percent year-over-year to $946.9 million, aided by strong North American production and sales, though was hit a bit by sales slowdowns in Brazil and Thailand, American Axle Chairman, President and CEO David C. Dauch said during the analyst call. The company’s sales to non General Motors Co. customers grew 33.2 percent to $298.1 million, a new quarterly record,with higher sales of parts for Chrysler Group LLC’s Jeep Cherokee and heavy-duty Ram full-size pickups.

“AAM’s financial results in the second quarter of 2014 reflect strong sales growth and profitability driven by the favorable impact of increased production volumes across many of our major product programs supporting the North American light vehicle segment,”Dauch said in a statement. “AAM is energized to continue supporting these and other new global product and process launches during the remainder of this year and continuing through the year 2015. Many of these launches feature exciting new advanced driveline technologies that are enhancing the diversification of our business and positioning AAM for solid profitability and consistent free cash flow generation.”

American Axle was founded in 1994 when investors bought five former General Motors plants.

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