Cooper announces first quarter results

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Co.'s first quarter net income totaled $26 million while its net sales jumped 7% from Q1 2001 to $813 million.

Cooper's first quarter operating profit increased 143% to $61 million.

Net sales for the company's Q1 tire operations

were $433 million vs. $388 million for the same period last year.

"This increase was driven by a strong performance in North America where sales increased more than 16%," say Cooper officials.

Cooper's North American unit sales jumped 15% during the first quarter.

The Findlay, Ohio-based tiremaker attributes Q1 gains to higher volumes, lower raw material costs and savings from restructuring activities completed last year.

"Looking ahead, we expect demand for tires to remain relatively strong through the spring and into the summer," says Cooper Chairman, President and CEO Tom Dattilo. "That should help keep pricing steady and inventories declining.

"Our forecasts for the next several months are positive."

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