James Hardie Industries plc (ASX:JHX) just disappointed investors

Shares in building materials supplier James Hardie Industries plc (ASX: JHX) are down 5.9% to $21.85 at the time of writing as its first quarter results were handed down today.

James Hardie announced an adjusted net operating profit of US$79.9 million for the first quarter of FY19 – up 29% on the previous corresponding period.

Group net sales and group adjusted EBIT were up 28% and 21% respectively with the company delivering strong top line growth in its North American fibre cement segment.

So why are its shares in the red?

The weakening housing market on home soil is a threat for James Hardie and friends like Boral Limited (ASX: BLD) and GWA Group Ltd (ASX: GWA) and there is major uncertainty in the US housing market which James Hardie is heavily invested in.

But with James Hardie expecting an improvement in North America figures throughout FY19 and good indications that its European team is on track the outlook is reasonable. However, another thing possibly holding investors back is volatility in input costs, which can put a definite strain on the bottom line.

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Motley Fool contributor Carin Pickworth has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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