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Huttig to close Virginia facility

Huttig Building Products will close its Fredericksburg, Va., distribution center, an action taken “as part of the company’s effort to appropriately adjust the size of its infrastructure in light of the continuing decline in the housing market,” according to a company filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Huttig says it will complete the closure in the fourth quarter of 2008. Huttig informed branch employees of the move last week.

Fredericksburg area customers will continue to be served through distribution facilities in Rocky Mount, N.C., and Lancaster, Pa., the company said.

Huttig expects to take charges of $600,000 to $800,000 from the closure, including $100,000 for employee severance costs.

Like most building materials dealers, Huttig struggled in its second quarter, hit by $2.5 million in losses, compared with earnings of $1.1 million in the same period last year. Sales fell 18.4 percent at the pro dealer to $195.4 million.

"In this challenging environment, we continue to focus on controlling expenses,” president and CEO Jon Vrabely told investors earlier this year, adding the company was working toward “improving operating efficiencies, reducing inventories, generating cash and gaining market share.”