Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. incurred a loss of $60 million in the first quarter of this year, due in large measure to devaluation of assets at its Celeron subsidiary, the world's largest tire manufacturer reported yesterday.
The after-tax write-down of the Celeron oil and gas reserves was largely because of lower oil prices and amounted to $110.8 million, the company said.
Also yesterday, Loews Corp. reported lower first-quarter earnings and Mesa Limited Partnership, which recently reported a rise in first-quarter earnings, revised its reports to show a loss based on a ruling this week by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
In the first quarter of last year, Goodyear, which is based in Akron, Ohio, earned $86.7 million (75 cents a share). Excluding the write-down, Goodyear earned $50.8 million in the first quarter. The company's sales amounted to $2.33 billion and were slightly higher than the $2.29 billion in the year-ago period.
Goodyear Chairman Robert E. Mercer said the company's acquisition of Celeron in 1983 was designed to attain diversification and achieve potential profits higher than available in tire markets. Loews Corp., a leisure, insurance and entertainment company, reported first-quarter earnings declined to $115.1 million ($1.41 a share), compared with $120.5 million ($1.48) in the year-ago quarter.
Revenue amounted to $1.9 billion in the three months ended March 31, compared with $1.5 billion in the same period of 1985.
The company, which is based in New York, said a change in accounting procedures related to employe pensions resulted in a net income loss of $1.5 million (2 cents) in the first quarter. Mesa Limited Partnership, which recently reported a first-quarter gain in earnings, yesterday said it is restating that report to show a loss of $169 million, based on Tuesday's ruling by the SEC on oil company inventory write-downs.
The company said its new figures, which now include a reduction in the value of its oil and gas properties by $200 million, give the company a loss of $169 million. That compares with previously reported earnings of $31 million (46 cents a share). Previously reported operating income of $58 million has been restated to a loss of $142 million, the company said in a written statement.
The Mesa earnings restatement was the first of the fallout expected to result from Tuesday's SEC decision. The commission rejected a plan to allow hundreds of independent oil and gas companies to delay huge write-downs required by the drop in oil prices.