Sales fell in the first quarter for BlueLinx, largely driven by inflationary pressures across certain product categories.

“We’re off to a solid start to 2024, despite ongoing deflationary pressures associated with our specialty business and January weather conditions that adversely impacted volumes,” president and CEO Shyam Reddy said. “We are pleased with the results for the quarter as volumes recovered and we maintained strong margins in specialty and structural products.

Net sales decreased 9.0% on a year-over-year basis in the first quarter to $726 million. BlueLinx reported a gross profit of $128 million, $6 million lower than the year-earlier period, and a gross margin of 17.6%.

Net sales of specialty products, which includes products such as engineered wood, siding, millwork, outdoor living, industrial products, and specialty lumber and panels, decreased 11.0% to $504 million in the quarter, largely due to deflationary impacts. Gross profit for the category was $104 million, down 2%, while gross margin was 20.7%, up compared to 18.8% a year ago.

Net sales of structural products, which includes products such as lumber, plywood, oriented strand board, rebar, and remesh, decreased 3% to $222 million in the first quarter. Gross profit for the category fell $3 million to $27 million. The decreases were due primarily to lower framing lumber volumes when compared to the elevated levels in the first quarter of 2023, according to BlueLinx.

“Our adjusted EBITDA of $39 million came in better than expected due to the higher margins in both specialty and structural products, as well as the net positive impact of import duty items of approximately $7 million related to products sold during prior periods,” chief financial officer Andy Wamser said.

Net income for the first quarter was $17 million for BlueLinx, down slightly compared to $18 million in the first quarter of 2023.