- The Washington Times - Monday, March 30, 2009

MANITOWOC, WIS. (AP) - Manitowoc Co., which manufactures cranes and foodservice equipment, said Monday that it no longer expects to meet its previous guidance for full-year earnings and sales, citing the continued decline in demand for its cranes.

The company also said that as a result of lower-than-expected proceeds from the sale of its global ice machine business, there is an increased chance that it could violate certain debt agreements during the second half of the year.

The news sent Manitowoc shares plunging $1.52, or 33 percent, to $3.09 in morning trading. The stock has ranged from $2.34 to $45.47 over the past year.

The company withdrew its previous guidance of a profit of $1.35 to $1.60 per share, and did not issue a new prediction for the year. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial expect a profit of $1.10 per share.

Furthermore, Manitowoc said it now expects its first-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations to come in more than 50 percent below current Wall Street estimates.



Analysts, on average, expect a first-quarter profit of 21 cents per share.

Over the last six to nine months, global demand for Manitowoc’s crane products has not stabilized and continues to decline further than previously expected due to the continuing global recession, the company said.

Manitowoc said it continues to cut costs by reducing its work force, cutting production and limiting its capital expenditures in an effort to partially offset the effect of lower demand.

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