StockMarketWire.com - Plumbing and heating products distributor Ferguson reported higher fiscal first-quarter profit led by tight cost control and ongoing growth in its US business.

For the three months to 31 October, underlying trading profit rose 4.8% to $433m on-year and revenue grew 5.4% to $5.2bn.

Gross margins were slightly lower at 29.7% in the quarter, though operating costs were well controlled, which led to a 'good' overall trading performance, the company said.

Looking ahead, Ferguson maintained its full-year expectations despite flat US market growth.

'While US market growth is currently broadly flat we remain confident of outperforming our end markets and our order books support continued modest revenue growth in the months ahead,' Ferguson said.

'This strong focus on growth with continued cost and margin discipline gives us confidence in our expectations for the full year which remain unchanged,' it added.

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