Charges hurt Wabash in 2Q

Declining sales and rising losses continue to dog trailer maker Wabash National Corp.'s attempts to return to profitability. Lafayette, IN-based Wabash lost $21.7 million on $210.3 million worth of trailer sales in the second quarter, compared to $18.1 million in losses on sales of $212.2 million in the same period last year. The trailer manufacturer had to take $22.7 million worth of charges this

Declining sales and rising losses continue to dog trailer maker Wabash National Corp.'s attempts to return to profitability.

Lafayette, IN-based Wabash lost $21.7 million on $210.3 million worth of trailer sales in the second quarter, compared to $18.1 million in losses on sales of $212.2 million in the same period last year. The trailer manufacturer had to take $22.7 million worth of charges this quarter to write-down the value of its used trailer inventory, restructure debt, cover severance costs and exit a number of financing deals.

For the first half of 2002, Wabash lost $36.3 million on sales of $372.2 million, an increase from the $35.8 million it lost on sales of $454.8 million in the first half of last year.

The company has been struggling for over a year now to return to profitability. In 2001, Wabash lost $232.2 million on sales of $863.4 million. Almost half of those losses occurred in the fourth quarter of 2001 as its sales fell 33% in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks and the slowdown then gripping the U.S. economy.

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