The Eastern Company Reports Results for the First Quarter of 2002

The Eastern Company Reports Results for the First Quarter of 20024/17/2002 10:21:00 AM

NAUGATUCK, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 17, 2002--The Eastern Company (AMEX:EML) today announced the results of its first-quarter operations. Sales for the first quarter of 2002 were $20.3 million, compared to $22.7 for the same period in 2001. First quarter net income was $677,000, or $.19 per basic share compared to the $1,152,000 or $.32 per basic share reported in the first quarter of 2001.

Leonard F. Leganza, President and CEO stated, "Operations in the first quarter of 2002 continued to be affected by the overall softness in the manufacturing sector of the U.S. economy. Sales decreased 10% from the comparable quarter of 2001, however, we are cautiously confident that sales volumes will improve as we go through the year. Net income declined 41% from the previous year as a direct result of lower sales volume reflecting less than fully utilized production facilities."

Mr. Leganza commented further, "The Company, as we have stated, will continue our initiatives in the development and introduction of new products in order to remain competitive in the niche markets that we serve. Among those initiatives is the development of a smaller size proprietary mine roof support anchor which will compete with resin based mine roof support systems. In addition, our security group has recently completed the development of a remote keyless entry system for use with tonneau covers, truck toolboxes and can be configured to fit other access applications. These and other new products should help strengthen our current operations."

The Eastern Company is a 144-year-old manufacturer of industrial hardware, security products and metal castings. It operates from nine locations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Taiwan and China. The diversity of the Company's products enables it to respond to the changing requirements of a broad array of markets.

Forward-Looking Statements: Information in this news release contains statements which reflect the Company's current expectations regarding its future operating performance and achievements. Actual results may differ due to the many economic uncertainties that affect the Company's business environment. Further information about the potential factors which could affect the Company's financial result are included in the Company's reports and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company is not obligated to update or revise the aforementioned statements for those new developments.

Statement of Consolidated Income (unaudited)
THE EASTERN COMPANY (AMEX - EML)

                                             THREE Months Ended
                                           13 wks            13 wks
                                       March 30, 2002   March 31, 2001

Net Sales                                $20,320,517       $22,676,922

Net Income After Tax                         677,107         1,151,872

Net Income Per Share:
    Basic                                $      0.19       $      0.32
    Diluted                              $      0.18       $      0.31

Weighted average
   shares outstandings:
                Basic                      3,629,258         3,619,945
                Diluted                    3,742,035         3,701,955

--30--gk/bos*

CONTACT: The Eastern Company
Leonard F. Leganza or John L. Sullivan III
(203) 729-2255