Texas Industries Inc.’s (TXI) fiscal second-quarter loss narrowed as the company’s cement sales and margins continued to strengthen. Sales at the cement segment, the company’s biggest by revenue, rose 20 percent as the division swung to an operating profit. Total sales at the consumer products business slipped 9 percent.
When the quarter ended Nov. 30, TXI reported a loss of $11.1 million, or 40 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier loss of $21 million, or 75 cents a share. The latest period included a charge for stock-based compensation of 5 cents a share, while the year-ago period included a restructuring-related charge of 11 cents a share and income from stock-based compensation of 6 cents a share. Revenue climbed 15 percent to $167.7 million.
The company, which sells cement and other building materials mainly in Texas and California, has struggled to compete against more geographically diversified peers. Soft demand prompted Texas Industries to unveil a series of cost cuts in 2011 that increased efficiency but reduced its workforce. However, the company has reported improvement in its cement segment and stronger margins in recent quarters.