Mattel Q3 sales rise

Mattel reported its third-quarter earnings yesterday showing a slight rise, but not enough to beat analysts? forecasts.
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The lower than expected results come as companies face a range of higher costs including increases in resin prices, higher wages and a stronger currency in China and higher product-testing costs.

The company’s profit rose slightly by one per cent to $238.1 million, or 66 cents per share, up from $236.8 million, or 61 cents per share, in 2007. The Thomson Financial consensus analyst forecast for the period was 71 cents per share.

Sales rose six per cent to $1.95 billion from $1.8 billion, missing analysts’ expectations of $1.96 billion. The benefit of a weaker dollar helped results by two percentage points.

Shares fell by two per cent, or 29 cents, to $14.16, meaning that in total, the company has tumbled 27per cent so far this year.

Barbie sales fell by one per cent, but Fisher-Price brand sales rose four per cent and American Girl sales rose by a healthy 11 per cent, boosted by the Kit Kittredge film.

Expenses for advertising, promotions and other selling and administrative expenses all rose during Q3.

Bob Eckert, Mattel's chairman and chief executive, said: “There will be a Christmas and Mattel toys will be under the tree. That said, I appreciate that some families may have to make choices this year when it comes to buying toys for their children.”

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