Retail

Goodyear to report record sales in third quarter

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The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. expects to report record sales of approximately $4.7 billion for the third quarter of 2004, up from $3.9 billion in the third quarter of 2003.

Improved pricing and product mix and higher unit volume contributed to the sales growth, Goodyear says.

The company expects to report these results and file its third quarter finincial statements by the November 9 deadline as required by federal securities laws.

The improvement in sales and earnings was driven by improved segment operating income in all seven of its businesses, the company says. Total segment operating income for the quarter is expected to approximately double compared to the 2003 period.

The 2004 quarter will include previously announced rationalization charges, mostly related to cost-reduction activities in the company´s non-tire businesses, which were largely offset by favorable tax adjustments related to the settlement of prior-year liabilities.

The company also announced it "will file an amended 2003 Form 10-K that will include additional financial disclosures related to certain affiliates, the results of which were included on an equity basis. This amended 2003 Form 10-K filing will also include a restatement of the company´s prior-period financial statements, including its first and second quarter 2004 Form 10-Qs, to reflect after-tax expense adjustments of approximatley $4.6 million. Most of these adjustments were identified through the implementation of the company´s previously announced mesures to improve its financial controls.

"In addition to these adjustments, the company identified a misclassification of deferred income tax assets and liabilities in its Consolidated Balance Sheet at Dec. 31, 2003. The misclassification overstated total assets and total liabilities by approximately $350 million each. As part of the restatement, Goodyear will correct the misclassification, which will also impact the March 31, 2004, and June 30, 2004, Consolidated Balance Sheets by equivalent amounts. The correction has no impact on shareholders´ equity, net income or cash flows.

"Goodyear does not expect any of the changes to the 2003 Form 10-K to impact covenants under the company´s existing financial arrangements."

"We look forward to reporting significant operating improvements across the board, demonstrating that we are on the right track to continue our turnaround," said Robert Keegan, chairman and chief executive officer. "At the same time, we are fully committed to accurate and transparent financial reporting, and we continue to implement stronger controls."

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