Diversified manufacturing company SPX Corp. (SPW) Monday slashed its earnings and revenue forecast for fiscal 2009, citing weak demand due to the global downturn. The company also provided earnings and revenue guidance for the first quarter of fiscal 2009. The company is scheduled to report financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2009 on April 29, 2009.

Following the announcement, the company's stock is trading in Monday's regular trading session at $43.82, down $9.81 or 18.29% on a volume of 1.45 million shares. In the past 52-week period, the stock has been trading in a broad range of $25.45 to $140.82.

In a statement, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Chris Kearney said, Global economic conditions continued to deteriorate in the first quarter of 2009, resulting in these lowered expectations for the year. In particular, demand in our short cycle flow technology end markets has been lower than our expectations. Additionally, sales in our tools and diagnostics business have been lower than expected due to the continued stress being experienced by global vehicle manufacturers and their dealer service networks.

The Charlotte, North Carolina-based company said it currently expects first quarter earnings from continuing operations to be towards the low end of the prior guidance range of $0.75 to $0.85 per share. On average, ten analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect earnings of $0.77 per share for the first quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.

Further, revenues for the first quarter are expected to be down about 14% from the year-ago quarter's revenues of $1.39 billion, reflecting revenues of about $1.20 billion. Six Wall Street analysts have a consensus revenue estimate of 1.24 billion for the first quarter.

Organic revenues for the first quarter are seen to decline 7%, and a negative impact of currency fluctuations is expected to reduce reported revenues by an additional 7%.

For fiscal 2009, SPX slashed its full-year forecast for earnings from continuing operations to a range of $4.40 to $4.80 per share from its prior guidance between $5.40 and $5.80 per share. The Street is currently looking at earnings of $5.11 per share for fiscal 2009.

Revenues for fiscal 2009 are now anticipated in a range of $4.9 billion to $5.1 billion, reflecting a decline of 12% to 16% from the prior year. Previously, the company had expected revenues between $5.3 billion and $5.6 billion, which reflected a decline of between 7% and 12% from last year. Analysts expect the company to report revenues of $5.27 billion for the full-year 2009.

Organic revenues for the full-year 2009 are seen to decline between 8% and 12% from last year, and a negative impact of currency fluctuations is expected to reduce reported revenues by 4% to 5% at current rates. Previously, the company anticipated organic revenues to be flat to down 5%.

The company also anticipates incurring $75 million or about $1.00 per share in restructuring charges in fiscal 2009, higher than the previous target of $65 million, reflecting lowered revenue expectations.

The continued stress being experienced by global vehicle manufacturers and their dealer service networks have reduced sales to lower than expected in the company's tools and diagnostics division. This has led to the company targeting an additional $10 million of restructuring actions across the company.

The company is intending to report financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2008 on April 29, 2009, pursuant to the completion of its ongoing normal quarterly review and approval process.

Among SPX's rivals, St. Louis, Missouri-based Emerson Electric Co. (EMR) last week trimmed its earnings and sales outlook for fiscal 2009, citing declining end-market demand and customer inventory reductions. This is the second time the company has slashed its outlook for the year. The company said that it now expects fiscal 2009 earnings to range between $2.40 and $2.60 per share, down from its prior revised expectation in a range of $2.70 to $2.95 per share.

Emerson also trimmed its net sales outlook range for the year to $21 billion to $21.7 billion, down from its revised sales outlook of $23 billion to $23.7 billion, provided in February. Restructuring expense has increased as the global economy has weakened and is now anticipated to range between $200 million and $250 million, according to the company.

Another rival, Hartford, Connecticut-based United Technologies Corp. (UTX) also last month trimmed its fiscal 2009 adjusted earnings and revenue forecast, reflecting additional restructuring activities. United Technologies' fiscal 2009 earnings is now estimated in a range of $4.00 to $4.50 per share, including $0.30 to $0.40 for the total 2009 restructuring costs net of anticipated one-time gains of $200 million to $350 million. The company's previous forecast was earnings of $4.65 to $5.15 per share, a range of plus or minus 5%, excluding the impact of acquisition related costs.

United Technologies also trimmed its fiscal 2009 revenue guidance to about $55 billion. In December, the company had projected revenues for fiscal 2009 to decline to about $57 billion, impacted by foreign currency translation, which would more than offset expected low single digit organic growth.

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