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Textile News

The Results Are In - We're Glad It's Over

Compiled by Greg W. Powell and Nitesh A. Lala

D uring 1998, the economy continued to show resilience — the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 16.1 percent, and the S&P 500 advanced 26.7 percent. However, the Russell 2000 declined 3.5 percent and on average, each stock in the Bank of America Stock Watch lost 25.5 percent of its value.

Among the factors contributing to this poor performance were the lingering Asian crisis, leading to a surge in cheap imports; cautious buying from retailers with requests for shipping delays; lower mill operating rates as longer holiday downtime is scheduled to prevent excessive year-end inventory; flat to declining industry pricing reflecting import pressure; and unseasonably warm weather that dampened the demand for fleece, outerwear and blankets.

In Textile News

On December 30, Worldtex completed its previously announced acquisition of the Lexington, S.C., narrow-elastic fabric manufacturing facility of Fruit of the Loom. Worldtex signed a long-term supply agreement in connection with the purchase. According to a Fruit of the Loom spokesman, the sale price was between $10 and 15 million.

Elsewhere, a unit of JPS Textile Group agreed to sell its home furnishings business to Belding Hausman for $11.4 million.

Consolidation in the carpet industry continues with two recent transactions. On December 23, Mohawk Industries announced an agreement to acquire Durkan Patterned Carpets, a leading supplier of commercial carpet to the hospitality market. Durkan has annual sales of roughly $110 million.

On January 11, The Dixie Group completed its acquisition of the assets of Multitex Corporation of America, a carpet and carpet yarn producer with annual sales of $85 million. The purchase price was $30 million in cash plus certain future payments linked to revenue growth. Dixie expects $600 million in floorcovering sales in 1999.


Information contained herein is based upon sources believed reliable, but is not guaranteed as to accuracy or completeness. This report is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell security. Certain prices listed herein are indicaton quotes only and may not necessarily reflect prices at which transactions were executed.
February 1999



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