March 1 (Reuters) - Specialty metals and plastics distribution company A.M. Castle & Co posted lower-than-expected quarterly profit for the fourth time this year, hurt by higher costs.
The company -- which caters to a range of markets, including the oil and gas, heavy equipment, industrial goods and construction equipment industries -- has struggled to contain rising costs this year, despite seeing strong demand.
Sales, general and administrative costs expenses rose 21 percent in the quarter, while cost of materials increased 25 percent, Franklin Park, Illinois-based A.M. Castle said.
Quarterly net sales rose by a fifth to $282.2 million.
Fourth-quarter net loss widened to $12 million, or 52 cents per share, from a year-ago loss of $1.5 million, or 7 cents per share.
Excluding items, the company earned 3 cents per share.
Analysts, on average, were expecting a profit of 12 cents per share, on revenue of $270.6 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
A.M. Castle shares, which have lost about a third of their value in the last year, closed at $11.45 on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Swetha Gopinath in Bangalore; Editing by Viraj Nair)