Calhoun, GA, May 2, 2014 -- Mohawk Industries reported first quarter net earnings of $81 million and earnings per share of $1.11. That's up from the first quarter last year when it posted net income of $50 million.
Sales for the quarter were $1.8 billion, up from $1.5 billion a year ago.
Excluding unusual charges, net earnings for the quarter were $90 million, a 41% increase over last year's first quarter adjusted earnings.
"First quarter earnings were higher than expected due to our 2013 acquisitions, improved productivity across our business and stronger results outside North America, although severe winter weather in the U.S. impacted sales," said CEO Jeffrey Lorberbaum.
The carpet segment's net sales were $675 million, down 3% from last year with one less day in the period, with residential outperforming the other categories.
The company's said its ultra-soft products continue to take a greater share of the premium carpet category, and its new Continuum products are gaining momentum at both the value added and promotional price points.
Net sales of ceramics were $695 million, up 69% from a year ago, primarily due to the Marazzi acquisition and legacy sales growth in North America.
The company announced the construction of a new U.S. ceramic plant to manufacture premium products, with production scheduled to start up by the end of 2015.
Net sales for laminate and wood were $468 million, an increase of 16% over the prior year, with most of the increase from the Spano acquisition, higher volume in wood flooring and growth in insulation boards.
"Although the weather in the first quarter impacted our U.S. business, orders and shipments began improving as the period ended," Lorberbaum said.
He said the company is planning to increase capital investments to an all-time high of $500 million.