Shares to Watch Crane Group (CRG)

Crane Group (CRG) is a major manufacturer and distributor of building, plumbing and electrical products.

CRG’s major businesses are Tradelink, Crane Distribution NZ, Iplex, Austral Wright Metals, and Crane Copper Tube.  Regrettably, it has also been one of the shares to sell in the Australian stock market in recent months.

CRG recently reported a 27% slide in FY10 net profit to $31.9 million, from $43.6 million a year earlier.

CRG declared a final dividend of 22 cents per share, which was down 21% from FY09’s 28 cents per share.

Revenue fell across all of CRG’s divisions, with its pipeline business the weakest performer amid a 25.9% drop in revenue.

Encouragingly, CRG expects profit across its businesses to improve in FY11 due to moderate growth in Australia’s economy, meaning it will be one of the shares to watch in coming months.

The optimistic outlook saw an almost 5% surge in CRG’s share price on the day of the announcement.