Posted May 13, 2020

MSC says April sales declined 10.5 percent

MSC Industrial Supply reported total net sales for the month of April were $235.5 million, a decrease of 10.5 percent from $263 million in April 2019.

Combined sales for March and April, the first two months of the company's fiscal third quarter, were $565.4 million, a decrease of 7.8 percent compared to the same period in the prior fiscal year.

MSC experienced an unusually large gap between bookings (or orders) and what was invoiced in fiscal March 2020. This trend continued through fiscal April 2020, with bookings increasing at a double-digit pace over the prior year period due to the continuing surge in large safety and janitorial orders, scarcity of product and longer lead times. Order backlog increased substantially versus the prior year period and is well above $100 million. MSC anticipates many of these bookings to invoice in May and the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

In April, the company's non-safety and janitorial product lines saw a significant decline versus the prior year due to the impact of prolonged customer shutdowns and world-wide efforts to control COVID-19.

MSC intends to continue reporting monthly sales trends until the heightened uncertainty caused by COVID-19 diminishes.