Webb responds to increased raw material costs

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Webb Wheel Products Inc. announced today, April 17, that it will take immediate actions to mitigate the risks associated with skyrocketing global metals prices. Effective immediately, Webb will move to a monthly pricing schedule for all product lines, reflecting unprecedented increases imposed by the metals market in the purchased price of its products.

“Castings are a significant part of our total product costs,” says Pedro Ferro, president of Cullman, Ala.-based Webb Wheel Products. “Webb has been working closely with our casting suppliers to monitor the scrap market trends. In the first quarter of 2008, scrap prices have increased 88 percent, and we have experienced further alarming increases since the first of April.”

The costs for raw materials used in producing castings for the wheel-end industry have escalated at an unprecedented rate due to the increasing world demand for available scrap, according to Webb; rising prices for these commodities is fueled further by a weak U.S. dollar and limited supply. Webb says it will continue to monitor this situation closely to mitigate, wherever possible, the impact this pricing change will have on its customers.

“It’s unfortunate, but we have no reason to believe the extreme scrap market volatility will subside any time soon, thus making the immediate pricing changes necessary,” Ferro says.

Webb Wheel Products is a Marmon Highway Technologies company that manufactures hubs, brake drums and rotors for medium- and heavy-duty trucks, trailers and buses. MHT announced April 10 that it would increase prices immediately to deal with skyrocketing global metals costs.

MHT companies, under many brands – Fontaine, Webb, Leland, Perfection, Triangle, Fleetline, Nuline and Hogebuilt – engineer, manufacture and supply a broad range of products to the highway transportation industry, including brake systems, transport trailers, fifth wheels, leaf springs, spray suppression equipment, specialty drive axles, truck modifications and clutches.