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Black & Decker 4Q Profit Falls On Expenses

Power tool company said its fourth-quarter profit fell on expenses related to its $4.5 billion acquisition by Stanley Works.

TOWSON, Md. (AP) -- Black & Decker said Wednesday its fourth-quarter profit fell on expenses related to its $4.5 billion acquisition by Stanley Works.

The power tool company has been hit by the recession and housing crisis, but said it "modest improvement" in many of its markets this year as the economy recovers.

Black & Decker's earnings slipped 22 percent to $33.9 million, or 55 cents per share, compared with $43.7 million, or 72 cents per share, a year earlier.

Taking out expenses related to its acquisition by Stanley Works, profit was $1.24 per share.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, whose estimates normally remove one-time items, expected a much smaller profit of 76 cents per share.

The results were also well above Black & Decker's prediction for earnings between 68 cents and 78 cents per share.

The company's shares rose about 1 percent, or 75 cents, to $69.50 in premarket trading.

When the new company emerges as Stanley Black & Decker in the first half of this year, it will be the nation's largest tool company.

Executives say the all-stock deal will cut costs by $350 million within three years, likely in part through an unspecified number of job cuts, and increase earnings per share by $1 within three years.

Still, as Black & Decker muscles through the recession, it saw its sales for the period ended Dec. 31 fell 6 percent to $1.3 billion from $1.38 billion. That still edged out Wall Street expectations by a hair.

Black & Decker Corp., whose brands include DeWalt, Porter-Cable and its namesake, said its full-year profit declined 55 percent to $132.5 million, or $2.17 per share, from $293.6 million, or $4.77 per share, in the prior year.

Adjusted earnings were $3.01 per share.

Annual sales dropped 22 percent to $4.78 billion from $6.09 billion.

The company anticipates a mid-single-digit increase in sales during the first quarter, will full-year sales up low single-digits. It did not provide any earnings forecasts.

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