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What a difference a year made for Monaco Coach Corp., the RV manufacturer that is, perhaps, best known for its mid- to highline diesel pushers.
A year ago, the company, with major operations in Indiana and Oregon, was faced with pushing tens of millions of dollars worth of unsold inventory through the retail pipeline because it did not react in time to the falloff in demand prior to the start of the war in Iraq 13 months ago.
As a result, the New York Stock Exchange-listed company laid off 850 workers in April of last year, lowered its output by around 20% and used wholesale and retail discounts to sell off its excess inventory.
Despite operating at only 50% capacity during much of the spring and summer of last year, Monaco was profitable during each of last year’s four quarters, although it earned only $582,000, on sales of $268.4 million during the April-through-June portion of 2003.
The company ended up earning a total of $22.2 million for all of 2003, a 50% drop-off from the $44.5 million net profit it generated in 2002.
Although Monaco has not yet announced when it will report its earnings for the first quarter of this year, investors believe the results will be good.
Monaco stock reached a 52-week high, $30.45 a share, today (April 19) before closing at $30.35. Its previous 52-week high was $30.24, established Friday (April 16).
A 52-week low, $12.51 a share, was set about a year ago.