Strong sales in China propel A.O. Smith

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A.O. Smith Corp. has reported third quarter net earnings of $50.6 million, or 56 cents per share, up from $46.2 million, or 50 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

The company’s quarterly sales grew 8.5 percent to $581.6 million from $536.2 million a year earlier.

“A. O. Smith continued to benefit from improvement in several key sectors of the economy in the U. S.,” said Ajita Rajendra, chairman and chief executive officer. “A growing home construction market created higher demand for residential water heaters, and continued strength in high efficiency, condensing boilers, favorably impacted demand for commercial boilers. Our team in China continued to do an excellent job of growing the business and serving our customers in that important region of the world. Increased consumer demand for water heaters and water treatment products had a favorable impact. Overall, China sales increased approximately 16 percent in the quarter.”

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Third quarter sales for the North America segment increased approximately6 percent to $392.4 million compared with third quarter 2013 sales of $370.1 million, driven by higher sales of residential water heaters and commercial boilers and a price increase implemented May 1, 2014.

Looking forward, Rajendra said, “Our A. O. Smith team continues to execute at a high level, and our focus on customer satisfaction and cost management can be seen in our strong financial performance to date. With improved market conditions in our major markets, and continued customer acceptance of our products in China, we feel confident about our company’s prospects for the remainder of this year.”

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