Tenneco rides auto sales rebound to solid 2Q profit

By Reuters
Posted July 29, 2010 at 11:01 a.m.

Auto parts maker Tenneco Inc. on Thursday posted  a second-quarter profit that surged past Wall Street expectations, as auto production rose by 72 percent in North America, its largest market.

Tenneco shares rose more than 6 percent in morning trading, to $25.61.

The Lake Forest-based supplier reported net income of $40 million, or 66 cents per share, compared with a loss of $33 million, or 72 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 36 percent, to $1.5 billion.

Excluding one-time items, such as $4 million in restructuring charges, Tenneco posted a profit of 62 cents per share. Analysts on average had expected earnings of 44 cents per share on that adjusted basis, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Tenneco makes emission control products, shock absorbers and other components  to improve the ride of new vehicles for a range of automakers including General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Volkswagen AG.

The company also supplies equipment to reduce emissions for diesel trucks and has said it has 11 commercial vehicle customers with supply agreements in that area through 2011 prompted by new emissions regulations.

It also sells replacement parts under a range of brands including Monroe shocks and struts for use in the vehicle repair business.

Sales in North America accounted for almost half of Tenneco’s revenue, and that market had the most pronounced recovery from 2009, when auto sales and production were at their lowest level since the early 1980s.

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