Posted April 6, 2016

Sales declined 3.2 percent for MSC

MSC Industrial Supply reported net sales of $684.1 million for the second quarter, a decline of 3.2% year-over-year.

Net income of $49.5 million, or 80 cents per diluted share, compared to net income of $51.5 million, or 83 cents, in the same period last year.

"The market environment during our fiscal second quarter remained challenging, consistent with continued low levels of demand in the industrial economy and particularly in metalworking and heavy manufacturing. Continued share gains, as well as strong execution on our gross margin countermeasures and cost reduction initiatives, helped offset this ongoing weakness," said Erik Gershwind, president and chief executive officer.

Rustom Jilla, executive vice president and chief financial officer, added, "Our second quarter gross margin and EPS were both at the top of our guidance range, while average daily sales and operating expenses were in-line with our guidance. Our strong cash flows for the quarter reflect our working capital management, including a reduction in inventory, which we achieved while maintaining the very high service levels that define our competitive advantage."

The company expects net sales for the fiscal 2016 third quarter to be between $729 million and $741 million. At the midpoint, average daily sales are expected to decline roughly 3 percent compared to the prior year period. MSC expects diluted earnings per share for the fiscal 2016 third quarter to be between 98 cents and $1.02.