Coast Distribution reports 3Q dip

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Coast Distribution Systems reported a net loss of $290,000, or 7 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $34.7 million for the third quarter ended Sept. 30.

For the same period of 2007, Coast reported net earnings of $834,000, or $0.18 per diluted share, on net sales of $43.2 million.

In the nine months ending Sept. 30, Coast generated net earnings of $421,000, or 9 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $115.4 million, compared to net earnings of $1.707 million, or 38 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $137.6 million in the same nine months of 2007.

"We anticipated that the second half of 2008 would be a difficult period based on the extremely difficult market conditions facing the RV and recreational boating markets, and consumer products in general, as a result of the turmoil in both the U.S. credit markets and the economy in general and relatively high fuel prices," said Coast chief executive officer Jim Musbach.

"In response to conditions in our primary markets, we are taking steps to control costs and keep them in line with sales. Since November 2007, we have reduced our staffing levels by 15 percent. We have also replaced our annual Las Vegas trade show with a new, much more efficient online program that directly rewards customers with better pricing and other incentives for selling Coast products,” he added.

As in past years, the company expects a loss in the fourth quarter of 2008 because of the traditional seasonal slowdown in the quarter, as customers typically wait until the first quarter to begin placing their orders for the upcoming buying season, as well as the economic and market conditions that affected operating results in this year's third quarter.

Coast is a supplier of aftermarket replacement parts, accessories and supplies for the marine, recreational vehicle and outdoor recreation industries. Coast supplies more than 14,000 products from 500 manufacturers through 17 distribution centers located in the United States and Canada.

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