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Ashland Swings to Loss, Cuts Workforce 9%

February 9, 2009

Ashland posted a net loss of $119 million for its fiscal first quarter ended December 31, 2008, compared with income from continuing operations of $38 million in the year-ago period. Sales were about flat at $1.96 billion. Adjusted pro-forma operating income, which includes results from its recent Hercules purchase and excludes special charges, was $74 million, down 23%. Pro-forma sales fell 9%, to $2.2 billion. Ashland says that lower volumes across all segments were somewhat offset by higher selling prices. Meanwhile, Ashland says it will reduce costs by...

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