Snap-on retooled to boost earnings - Barron's

NEW YORK Sun Oct 3, 2010 3:56pm EDT

NEW YORK Oct 3 (Reuters) - Investors are betting Snap-on Inc (SNA.N), a top supplier of tools for mechanics, will rebound when the economy recovers, but the company can lift its sales and earnings in the meantime, Barron's reported Sunday.

Profit margins at the Kenosha, Wisconsin, company have widened in the past two quarters. The shares rallied, more than doubling to 47 from its March 2009 lows and could keep rising into the mid-$50s, Barron's said in its Oct. 4 edition.

Analysts expect Snap-on profit to rise 26 percent next year, the paper said.

Snap-on controls more than half of the professional tool market, but it is looking to expand sales of tools into new sectors like power generation and aerospace. Snap-on may also benefit as cars become more common in China and other markets.

Even as investors wait for the economy and automobile sector to recover, Barron's says Snap-on has retooled its operations to lift sales and earnings by boosting productivity and cutting costs.

(Reporting by Joseph A. Giannone; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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