Praxair Reports Third-Quarter 2011 Results

Praxair Reports Third-Quarter 2011 Results

October 26, 2011

  • Sales of $2.9 billion, 14% above prior-year quarter

  • Diluted EPS of $1.40, up 16%

  • Strong pipeline of growth projects in energy and emerging economies

  • Full-year 2011 diluted EPS guidance of $5.40 – $5.45. Fourth-quarter diluted EPS guidance of $1.33 – $1.38

DANBURY, Conn., October 26, 2011 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) reported third-quarter net income and diluted earnings per share of $429 million and $1.40, 14% and 16% above the prior-year quarter, respectively.

Third-quarter sales were $2,896 million, 14% above the previous-year quarter. Sales increased across all geographic regions with strong growth from manufacturing, metals, energy and chemicals markets. Sales rose 1% sequentially from the second quarter due primarily to higher volumes.

Operating profit in the third quarter was $632 million, up 15% from the prior-year quarter, reflecting higher volumes and prices combined with cost savings from productivity programs.

The company generated strong cash flow from operations in the quarter of $732 million. Operating cash flow funded $458 million of capital expenditures, primarily for new production plants under long-term contracts with customers. The company paid dividends of $150 million and purchased $251 million of stock, net of issuances. The after-tax return-on-capital ratio and return on equity for the quarter both increased, to 14.8% and 28.3%, respectively.*

Commenting on the business outlook, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Steve Angel said, “We are continuing to see solid growth in all geographies with the exception of Europe. Proposal activity remains at healthy levels and our backlog of large customer projects under construction is at a record $2.7 billion, 25% above 2010 levels. Most importantly, we remain confident in our ability to bring growth to the bottom line through our commitment to productivity and flawless execution.”

For the fourth quarter of 2011, Praxair expects diluted earnings per share in the range of $1.33 to $1.38. This guidance anticipates a headwind from weaker overseas currencies of about 5 cents relative to the third quarter of 2011.

For the full year of 2011, Praxair expects sales in the area of $11.2 billion and diluted earnings per share in the range of $5.40 to $5.45. Excluding the fourth-quarter currency headwinds, this guidance remains at the upper end of prior guidance. Full-year capital expenditures are expected to be approximately $1.8 billion, and the effective tax rate is forecasted to be about 28%.

Following is additional detail on third-quarter 2011 results by segment.

In North America, third-quarter sales were $1,427 million, up 11% from the prior-year quarter, primarily due to organic growth. Sales growth was strongest to manufacturing, energy, chemicals and metals markets. Operating profit of $350 million grew 11% from the prior year due primarily to higher volumes, price and productivity.

In Europe, third-quarter sales were $358 million, up 11% from the prior year, primarily due to positive currency effects. Operating profit increased 10% from the prior-year quarter to $65 million due to positive currency effects slightly offset by continued margin pressures.

In South America, third-quarter sales of $607 million grew 20% versus the prior-year quarter. Excluding currency effects, sales grew 14% due primarily to higher on-site, merchant and packaged-gas sales to manufacturing, metals and food and beverage markets. Operating profit was $140 million, 20% above the prior-year quarter, due to higher volumes, price, productivity and currency effects.

Sales in Asia were $341 million in the quarter, up 19% from the prior year driven by strong growth in China, India, Korea and Thailand. Sales growth came from metals, electronics and chemical customers. Operating profit was $51 million, 34% above the prior-year quarter, due primarily to higher volumes, price and productivity.

Praxair Surface Technologies had third-quarter sales of $163 million, up 16% from the prior-year quarter. Sales growth came primarily from higher volumes of coatings to energy markets. Operating profit of $26 million in the quarter was 13% above the prior-year period due primarily to higher volumes.

Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric and process gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies are making our planet more productive by bringing efficiency and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information on Praxair is available at www.praxair.com.

*See the attachments for calculations of non-GAAP measures

Attachments: Statements of Income, Balance Sheets, Statements of Cash Flows, Segment Information, Quarterly Financial Summary, and Appendix: Non-GAAP Measures.

Praxair 3Q 11 Earnings Release Tables (124KB) Statements of Income, Balance Sheets, Statements of Cash Flows, Segment Information, Quarterly Financial Summary, and Appendix: Non-GAAP Measures.
Praxair 3Q 11 Teleconference Slides (240KB) Teleconference presentation on Praxair's
3Q11 results. 

A teleconference on Praxair’s third-quarter results is being held this morning, October 26, 2011, at 11:00 am Eastern Time. The number is (617) 801-9713 — Passcode: 82506832. The call also is available as a web cast at www.praxair.com/investors. Materials to be used in the teleconference are also available.

This document contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on management’s reasonable expectations and assumptions as of the date the statements are made but involve risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation: the performance of stock markets generally; developments in worldwide and national economies and other international events and circumstances; changes in foreign currencies and in interest rates; the cost and availability of electric power, natural gas and other raw materials; the ability to achieve price increases to offset cost increases; catastrophic events including natural disasters, epidemics and acts of war and terrorism; the ability to attract, hire, and retain qualified personnel; the impact of changes in financial accounting standards; the impact of changes in pension plan liabilities; the impact of tax, environmental, healthcare and other legislation and government regulation in jurisdictions in which the company operates; the cost and outcomes of investigations, litigation and regulatory proceedings; continued timely development and market acceptance of new products and applications; the impact of competitive products and pricing;  future financial and operating performance of major customers and industries served; and the effectiveness and speed of integrating new acquisitions into the business. These risks and uncertainties may cause actual future results or circumstances to differ materially from the projections or estimates contained in the forward-looking statements. The company assumes no obligation to update or provide revisions to any forward-looking statement in response to changing circumstances. The above listed risks and uncertainties are further described in Item 1A (Risk Factors) in the company’s Form 10-K and 10-Q reports filed with the SEC which should be reviewed carefully. Please consider the company’s forward-looking statements in light of those risks.

Contact
Media Contact:
Susan Szita Gore

Email: susan_szita-gore@praxair.com

Phone: 1-203-837-2311

Investor Relations Contact:
Kelcey Hoyt

Email: kelcey_hoyt@praxair.com

Phone: 1-203-837-2118