UPDATE 1-Insteel posts surprise Q4 loss; sees no demand recovery
* Q4 loss $0.09/shr vs est break even
* Net sales down 8 pct at $56.2 vs est $60.5 mln
* Says yet to see signs of recovery in demand
Oct 21 (Reuters) - Steel wire reinforcing products maker Insteel Industries Inc (IIIN.O) posted a surprise quarterly loss hurt by continued weakness in its end market, non-residential construction, and said it is yet to see signs of recovery.
Non-residential construction -- including office buildings and commercial space like shopping and distribution centers, as well as factories -- has been hampered by tight credit and a wobbly U.S. economy. High unemployment has depressed demand for new office towers and shops.
"The construction sector continues to be mired in a recession that is unlikely to subside until the economy rebounds and there is a pronounced recovery in the U.S. job market," Insteel said.
For the July-September quarter, the company lost $1.7 million, or 9 cents a share from continuing operations, compared with a profit of $2.8 million, or 16 cents a share, a year ago.
Net sales for the fourth quarter decreased 8 percent to $56.2 million, as shipments fell 13.8 percent.
Analysts on an average expected the company to break even per share, on revenue of $60.5 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The Mount Airy, North Carolina company's shares, which have been declining throughout the year and touched a year-low of $7.73 on Sept. 1, closed at $9.32 Wednesday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Krishna N. Das in Bangalore; Editing by Vyas Mohan)
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