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Cooper achieves record third quarter results

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Co.'s total net sales for the third quarter reached $913 million, a 9% increase over Q3 2002 results and a company record.

Cooper's Tire Group achieved all-time record net sales of $526 million during the third quarter, a 13% jump from $464 million recorded during the same period last year.

The Findlay, Ohio-based tiremaker's total tire unit sales grew 11% during Q3 2003. Net sales of the company's house brand increased 16%.

Third quarter operating profit for the Tire Group was $34 million vs. $27 million during Q3 2002.

"The improvement was the result of record sales, higher production volumes and improved overhead absorption, and improved product mix," say Cooper officials.

Cooper Chairman, President and CEO Tom Dattilo reports that tire demand picked up late in the second quarter "and continued strong right through the third quarter. In fact, orders throughout the quarter were so strong that our fill rates were below our target 95%, leaving some additional sales to carry into the fourth quarter."

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