STOCKHOLM, Feb 4 (Reuters) - Husqvarna, the world’s biggest maker of gardening power tools, reported on Tuesday a quarterly operating loss that was bigger than expected and said sales in the U.S. were hit by trade partners continuing to reduce their inventories.
The fourth-quarter operating loss narrowed to 493 million crowns ($51.2 million) from a year-earlier loss of 1.10 billion. Analysts had on average forecast a 349 million crown loss, according to Refinitiv estimates.
The Swedish supplier of lawn mowers and trimmers does the bulk of its business towards the end of the first quarter and in the second - ahead of and during peak gardening season in the northern hemisphere.
It proposed an unchanged dividend of 2.25 crowns per share. ($1 = 9.6341 Swedish crowns) (Reporting by Anna Ringstrom; Editing by Simon Johnson)