Diesel engine maker Cummins Inc. has reported profit after taxes of $3 million, or $.08 cents per share, on revenues of $1.46 billion for the fourth quarter of 2001. The performance is slightly up on analysts' expectations. Cost-cutting at the company helped to compensate for continuing weak demand in the heavy-duty truck sector.

Earnings for the quarter are up from the fourth quarter of 2000, when the company lost $17 million, or $.45 cents per share on sales of $1.61 billion, exclusive of a pre-tax charge of $160 million associated with restructuring actions. Including the charge, Cummins reported a loss of $120 million or $3.16 per share in the fourth quarter of 2000.

In 2001 as a whole, Cummins reported a loss for the year of $18 million, or $.47 cents per share, excluding a pre-tax charge of $125 million for costs associated with restructuring in the second quarter. Including the charge, Cummins lost $102 million, or $2.66 per share for the full year 2001. Despite the loss, Cummins reported profits in each of the last three-quarters of 2001 on substantially lower sales.

"2001 was a challenging year for us, yet we were able to make significant progress in improving our operations and meeting our financial commitments in the face of the most severe market conditions that I can remember," said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Tim Solso. "Delivering on our fourth quarter targets demonstrates the resolve that our employees and management team have to do whatever it takes to succeed in today's environment. This resolve, coupled with our restructuring actions, cost reduction efforts, and Six Sigma programs will enable us to generate significantly higher profitability as industry conditions improve."

Fourth quarter revenues for the company's engine business were $800 million, down 15% from the fourth quarter 2000. Sales of $247 million to the worldwide heavy-duty truck market were down 23% from fourth quarter 2000, reflecting a continuing softness in the market and plant shut downs at several OEMs.

In the medium-duty truck and bus segment, sales of $151 million were up 2% from last year. Sales to the light-duty automotive and recreational vehicle segment were down 26% on sales of $139 million, 'primarily due to the model changeover in the Dodge Ram pickup'.

The company says that it does not expect a significant improvement in revenue in 2002. Cummins does expect, however, to achieve a profitability improvement over 2001 through continuing cost reduction efforts.

With the further deterioration in our power generation and engine business markets, Cummins now expects first quarter 2002 results to be a loss of around $31 million dollars, or $.80 cents per share.

The company is also lowering its guidance for the full year to $.70 to $.80 cents per share. This change is due to lower heavy-duty volumes than previously forecasted and weaker markets in the Power Generation Business in the first quarter. These will be 'somewhat offset by increased volumes for Chrysler and additional cost reductions in our Engine Business to reflect the volume decline'.