Duluth-based imaging technology company IKONICS Corp. (IKNXannounced  second quarter sales of $4.6 million, down 1 percent compared with the second quarter of 2018.  Second quarter earnings fell from $145,000 (7 cents per diluted share) in 2018 to a loss of $116,000, (6 cents per diluted share) in 2019.  

Earnings for the first six months of the year have also decreased from net income of $15,000 (1 cent per diluted share) in 2018 to a loss of $571,000 (29 cents per diluted share) in 2019.

“The earnings decline for first half of 2019 was partially attributable to a $72,000 customer credit due to product damaged from freezing during shipping, and a $144,000 increase in medical insurance expense compared to the first six months of 2018,” said CEO Bill Ulland.  We do not anticipate a continuation of the increasing medical expense or shipping issues. 

“The rest of 2019 looks better: Our new IKONART product is gaining traction with major distributors, and our aerospace business is seeing a record number of new development leads across several industries. In addition, it appears that the trade war, which has affected our sales to China, may be cooling down.” 

Ulland noted the corporation repurchased 2,742 shares this year under its stock buy-back program and 97,258 shares remain available for future purchases.