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Carpet products sales decline 6% in Q1 of Dixie Group

Apr '07
The Dixie Group Inc reported income from continuing operations of $237,000, or $0.02 per diluted share, for the first quarter ended March 31, 2007, compared with income from continuing operations of $926,000, or $0.07 per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2006. Sales for the first quarter of 2007 were $74,490,000, down 6% from sales of $79,173,000 in the year-earlier quarter.

Commenting on the results, Daniel K. Frierson, chairman and chief executive officer, said, "First quarter results reflected a 6% decline in our sales of carpet products. Nevertheless, our sales continued to outperform the carpet industry as a whole, where sales were off almost 10% compared with the year-earlier period. Almost 60% of our carpet sales decline was due to lower sales to one customer - The Home Depot - where carpet business was extremely weak. Residential carpet sales to our other customers were down only about 4%, and our commercial carpet sales were off less than one-half of 1%.

"Despite lower revenue and the effect on fixed costs of the drop in unit volume, our gross margin as a percentage of net sales improved compared with the first quarter a year ago. Higher average selling prices, better product mix, improved production quality and manufacturing efficiencies all had a positive impact on our gross margin percentage. The average selling prices of our carpet business rose to over $21.00 per square yard in the first quarter of this year, compared with average selling prices of less than $20.00 per square yard in the first quarter of last year.

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