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Quaker bucks tide, posts big 4Q

Fueled by a double-digit increase in sales, fourth-quarter profits at Quaker Fabric Inc. rose by 5.0 percent, to $3.1 million from $2.9 million last year.

Bucking a recessionary tide and a slowdown in consumer spending, Quaker pushed its sales higher by 15.0 percent, to $90.3 million from $78.5 million.

Holding profits in check, beneath the rate of sales, average gross margin narrowed during the closing quarter by 60 basis points, to 22.2 percent from 22.8 percent a year ago. Costs climbed slightly higher, by 10 basis points, to 15.8 percent of sales from 15.7 percent.

Larry Liebenow, president and ceo, said, "New orders during the fourth quarter were up 18.5 percent vs. the comparable period of 2000, and we ended the year with a production backlog that, at approximately $43.0 million, was essentially similar to our backlog position at the end of the third quarter … We are very optimistic about Quaker's near-term potential and our ability to participate disproportionately in any uptick in the economy."

Quaker Fabric Corp.

Qtr. 12/29/01 (x000) 2001 2000 % CHG
a-12-month results include a one-time charge of $800,000 stemming from a terminated acquisition effort.
Sales $90,256 $78,471 15.0
Oper. income (EBIT) 5,821 5,609 3.8
Net income 3,065 2,920 5.0
Per share (diluted) 0.19 0.18 5.6
Average gross margin 22.2% 22.8%
SG&A expenses 15.8% 15.7%
12 months 2001 2000 % CHG
Sales 331,105 302,985 9.3
Oper. income (EBIT) 19,027 21,676 -12.2
Net income 9,548a 10,945 -12.8
Per share (diluted) 0.58 0.68 -14.7
Average gross margin 21.2% 22.5%
SG&A expenses 15.3% 15.3%

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