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Published: Wednesday, 8/1/2007

Libbey swings to quarterly gain

Libbey Inc. swung to a profit in the second quarter on stronger sales of glasses and tableware in North America and foreign markets.

The Toledo firm, which supplies homes, restaurants, and institutions, made $4 million, or 27 cents a share, in the period ended June 30.

That compared with a loss of $9.6 million, or 68 cents a share, for the same period last year.

Sales rose 31 percent to $207 million from $158 million in the prior-year period.

We experienced healthy increases in food service, retail, and industrial glassware shipments during the quarter, John Meier, chief executive officer, said in a written statement.

Operating results improved to a gain of $21 million from a loss of $4 million a year ago, giving Libbey its best operating margins in three years.

As a result of the strong performance, Libbey officials boosted the profit forecast for the full year, predicting $103 million to $109 million, before certain expenses, on sales of about $800 million.

Libbey shares rose $1.10, or 6 percent, to $19.95 in trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

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