Posted April 14, 2020

Fastenal Q1 sales up 4.4 percent

Fastenal Company reported first-quarter 2020 sales of $1.37 billion, a 4.4 percent improvement over $1.31 billion in the same period last year.

Net earnings of $202.6 million, or 35 cents per share, compared to earnings of $194.1 million, or 34 cents, in last year's first quarter.

"Compared to the first quarter of 2019, this increase was driven by higher unit sales related to our growth drivers, most notably contribution from industrial vending and Onsite locations, and from increases in certain products later in the quarter related to the coronavirus pandemic. A lesser contributor to our sales growth in the first quarter of 2020 was higher product pricing as a result of increases implemented throughout 2019 and in the first quarter of 2020 to mitigate the impacts of general and tariff-related inflation in the marketplace," according to a company statement. 

Looking at sales patterns throughout the quarter, business activity in January, February and the first half of March remained sluggish, as it had been through much of the latter half of 2019. The second half of March saw activity levels weaken significantly in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

While the company's facilities and in-market locations continue to operate, branches did restrict public access and many Onsite locations were closed or operated at a diminished capacity. For example, approximately 120 out of 1,136 North American Onsite locations were closed on March 31 because the customer was closed.