PPG Industries to Exhibit Prefinish Coatings at LBM Expo

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PPG IndustriesPPG is set to exhibit its broad portfolio of factory-applied primers, finishes and stains at the 2018 Lumber and Building Materials (LBM) Expo. The event will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center from Feb 14-16.

PPG Industries' machine-applied coatings have the ability to coat every edge, angle and groove to ensure thorough performance for every coated piece.

The products to be displayed in the LBM Expo include PPG Machinecoat exterior finish coatings for wood substrates and PPG Duracolor exterior finish coatings for fiber cement and composite substrates. Available in solid colors or semi-transparent coatings both the products offer excellent color retention and strong adhesion. PPG Duracolor coatings also provide protection against harsh exterior exposure and ultraviolet degradation, and are specifically designed for machine applicators.

Shares of the company have moved up around 9.7% over a year, underperforming the roughly 17.8% gain recorded by its industry .

PPG Industries witnessed a roughly two-fold year-over-year jump in its net earnings from continuing operations to $184 million or 72 cents per share in fourth-quarter 2017. Adjusted earnings of $1.19 per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.18.

Net sales rose around 8% year over year to $3,682 million and also came ahead of the Consensus Estimate of $3,605 million. The company gained from favorable currency translation in the quarter.

For 2018, PPG Industries expects acquisitions to contribute sales of roughly $125 million. The company recently agreed to acquire Netherlands-based leading architectural paint and coatings wholesaler, ProCoatings. Through its network of 23 multi-brand stores, ProCoatings distributes a large portfolio of professional paint brands across the Netherlands. The transaction is expected to close in first-quarter 2018, subject to customary closing conditions.

To improve its cost structure, PPG Industries is pursuing significant restructuring actions that are mainly focused on regions and end-use markets with the weakest business conditions. The restructuring activities are expected to deliver around $125 million in annual savings with roughly $50 million of savings already realized in 2017 and another $45-$50 million expected in 2018.

Moreover, the company has an impressive record of returning cash to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks. PPG Industries returned roughly $1.2 billion to its shareholders in the form of dividend and share repurchases in 2017. It also repurchased shares worth more than $800 million last year.

On the fourth-quarter call, PPG Industries stated that it is committed toward deploying at least $2.4 billion of cash in 2018 on acquisitions and share repurchases as part of its earlier communicated goal of deploying $3.5 billion in 2017 and 2018 combined.

However, the company is exposed to raw materials cost pressure. PPG Industries is seeing higher raw materials costs and implementing pricing strategies to offset the impact of inflation. The company anticipates raw material inflation to continue through first-half 2018.

PPG Industries, Inc. Price and Consensus

PPG Industries, Inc. Price and Consensus | PPG Industries, Inc. Quote

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

PPG Industries carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the chemical space are Methanex Corporation MEOH , LyondellBasell Industries NV LYB and Air Products and Chemicals Inc. APD .

Methanex has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 15% and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Its shares have rallied 19% over a year. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

LyondellBasell has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 9% and a Zacks Rank 1. shares have gained 19.6% in a year.

Air Products has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 14.2% and a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Its shares were up 12.6% over a year.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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