RPM International Earnings Call Nuggets: April Outlook and Raw Materials Trends
RPM International Inc (NYSE:RPM) recently reported its third quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.
Silke Kueck – JPMorgan: A couple questions. Various companies have recently preannounced and indicated the weakness in Europe and maybe in some other end markets and the commentary always had been that January was okay, February really got weak, March didn’t really improve, and it was challenging to tell how volume growth would look for the second calendar quarter, and so I was wondering whether you can just discuss how your own business trends look like, how have you done in March, and how is April shaping up?
Frank C. Sullivan – Chairman and CEO: You know what, the story of our third quarter and what we would expect to see in the fourth quarter is really the theme throughout the year. Weakness in Europe, which is continuing, and so we’ve experienced weakness throughout the year and it’s not getting better. I think one of the challenges that we face in overcoming the severance costs, for instance, that we took in Europe and there’s a possibility of some more severance costs there in the fourth quarter as our businesses there are appropriately adjust to lower business volume. It’s pretty much the same as it’s been, so we don’t see it really any different than it’s been for us and that will continue in our fourth quarter. We do believe that strength in consumer, strength in North American construction and other areas of our business are going to continue as well, and so we’re pretty hopeful that we’re going to have a fourth quarter that looks like each of the quarters this year so far. The big challenge we have in relationship to meeting our goals for the year is really overcoming some of the one-time hits in Europe like severance costs in the third quarter of which there may be more of in the fourth as well as the foreign exchange hit that we took principally in our company balances in Europe.
Silke Kueck – JPMorgan: Secondly, as one follow-up on the consumer side, I thought the consumer results were excellent given the tough comparisons versus last year. Is this a RPM-specific benefit from share gains, new product offerings, or do you think other companies will benefit also because foot traffic in stores has picked up (indiscernible) beyond that?