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Cooper Closes Q4

DUBLIN — Cooper Industries plc (NYSE: CBE) reported core revenue growth of 14.1 percent as revenue reached $1.26 billion compared with $1.10 billion for the same period last year, excluding Tools segment revenue in 2009. Fourth quarter 2010 earnings per share from operations increased 12 percent to $.85 (diluted) compared with $.76 per share for the fourth quarter of 2009. For the quarter currency translation reduced reported revenues by 0.6 percent and acquisitions added 0.7 percent compared to the prior year.

“We are very pleased to report record core revenue growth in the fourth quarter for the combined Electrical Segments, a result of the improving conditions in our global end-markets and the continued success of our key growth initiatives. Our core growth accelerated in the quarter, as our industrial markets remained strong, utility markets continued to improve and demand for energy-efficient lighting technologies such as LED gained additional momentum. Additionally, we benefited from previous investments in strategic growth initiatives as both new product sales and international sales as a percent of total revenues were at all-time highs in the quarter. Incremental margins were somewhat muted by increasing commodity costs, the negative fixed cost absorption impact of inventory reductions and non-recurring legal and acquisition costs,” said Cooper Industries' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kirk S. Hachigian.

Revenues for the twelve months of 2010 were $4.75 billion, a 5.4 percent increase from the $4.51 billion in revenues for the twelve months of 2009, excluding the Tools segment revenues. For 2010, net income excluding the loss on the Tools Joint Venture recognized in the second quarter was $537.5 million, compared with $413.6 million from continuing operations for the prior year of 2009. Diluted earnings per share of $3.20, excluding the loss on the Tools Joint Venture, increased 30.1 percent compared with prior year's earnings per share of $2.46 from continuing operations.

During 2010 Cooper generated $606.6 million in free cash flow. Our total debt net of cash as of December 31 was $393.4 million, which results in a 10.9 percent net debt to capitalization ratio. “This is the tenth consecutive year we have reported free cash flow from operations greater than earnings from continuing operations. Our ability to generate strong free cash flow through all business cycles has provided us the flexibility to execute a consistent, well balanced capital allocation program. During the fourth quarter, we successfully issued $250 million of 5-year senior unsecured notes and $250 million of 10-year senior unsecured notes at a blended interest rate of 3.125 percent. With an exceptionally strong balance sheet, we continued to fund our core growth initiatives and are well positioned to capitalize on an improving acquisition pipeline as demonstrated by the three acquisitions completed in the fourth quarter of 2010 around our strategic growth platforms,” said Hachigian.

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