Manufacturing Odds & Ends

Class action stock lawsuit filed against Oshkosh Corp.
A class action lawsuit has been filed against Oshkosh Corp. with allegations that the company misled investors. The lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin on behalf of investors who purchased Oshkosh Corp. stock shares between Nov. 1, 2007 and June 25, 2008.

The suit was filed on behalf of investors by Schiffrin Barroway Topaz & Kessler LLP of Radnor, Pa. The suit alleges that the company failed to disclose a significant decrease in demand for the products of its JLG access-equipment division and "the company’s statements about its financial well-being and future business prospects were lacking in any reasonable basis when made."

On June 26, Oshkosh Corp. announced it expected to incur a loss of approximately $1.22 to $1.32 per share for the third quarter of fiscal 2008, in contrast to the company’s previous earnings per share estimate of $1.40 to $1.50 of income for the quarter. The stock then fell $11.22 per share, or 33.48 percent, to close on June 26, at $22.29 per share, on unusually heavy trading volume.

Johnson Controls projects lower sales in 2009
Johnson Controls Inc. recently projected 2009 sales of $37 billion, about 3 percent less than its 2008 sales.

The Glendale-based company said it expects its diversified business portfolio and its ability to improve its cost structure to partially offset the difficult economic environment with its buildings and power businesses.

The company is forecasting diluted earnings per share of $1.95 to $2.10, approximately 10 to 16 percent lower than 2008, based on its projections of lower global automotive production.

The company said that the assumptions for lower lead prices and a weaker Euro will reduce 2009 sales by approximately $1.7 billion.

"We recognize that we are facing a challenging environment in our global markets," said Stephen Roell, chairman and chief executive officer of Johnson Controls. "At the same time, we are entering fiscal 2009 with record backlogs in our automotive and building efficiency businesses and confidence in our ability to improve our cost structure. Based on what we see today, we believe we can achieve solid financial performance during this volatile economic environment."

Johnson Controls said it plans to benefit in 2009 from its market-leading positions in growth markets, especially China, Eastern Europe and the Middle East.

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