Canam's fourth-quarter profits more than double to $7.4 million on lower sales

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BOUCHERVILLE, Que. - Structural steel provider Canam Group Inc. met expectations Wednesday as it reported a more than doubling of profits to $7.4 million in the fourth quarter despite a nearly 17 per cent drop in sales.

The Quebec-based company earned 18 cents per share for the period ended Dec. 31, up from seven cents per share or $3.3 million last year.

Sales were $238.5 million, down from $285.6 million.

For the full year, it reversed last year's loss by earning $17 million, or 40 cents per share. That compared with a loss of $32.5 million, 72 cents per share in 2011. The 2011 results contained a $25 million after-tax provision related to work on BC Place.

Consolidated sales increased 2.8 per cent to $905.4 million, from $881 million in 2011.

Canam (TSX:CAM) was expected to earn 18 cents per share on $282 million of revenues in the quarter, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

For the full year, analysts forecast the company would earn 38 cents per share on $949.6 million of revenues.

Canam's order backlog at year-end was $493 million, up from $462 million at the end of 2011.

Canam Group CEO Marc Dutil said the increase in sales in 2012 was primarily due to joist and steel deck activities in Canada and the United States, and to contributions by FabSouth, a U.S. subsidiary.

On the Toronto Stock Exchange, its shares were up nine cents at $7.35 in afternoon trading Wednesday.

Organizations: Canam Group Inc., TSX, Thomson Reuters Toronto Stock Exchange

Geographic location: United States, Canada

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