Brunswick Corporation posted sales of $1.46 billion for the first quarter, an increase of 4.1% over sales of $1.40 billion during the year-ago quarter. Net earnings were $67.4 million, or 70 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2006, down 28.8% from net earnings of $94.6 million, or 96 cents per diluted share, for the same period last year.

On a pro forma basis reflecting the sale of the Brunswick New Technologies business unit, sales increased 5% to $1.41 billion from $1.34 billion in the quarter, and operating earnings declined slightly to $98.2 million.

The Fitness segment sales in the first quarter on a pro forma basis totaled $134.5 million, up 5% from $128.1 million in the year-ago quarter. Segment operating earnings were up 39% for the first quarter of 2006, totaling $8.9 million compared with $6.4 million for the year-ago quarter.

The Bowling & Billiards segment sales in the quarter were $114.7 million, up 3% compared with $111.5 million in the year-ago quarter. Operating earnings advanced 15%, totaling $12.8 million in the first quarter versus $11.1 million from the year-ago quarter. Operating margins were up 120 basis points to 11.2% as compared with 10.0% in 2005.

For the second quarter, earnings per diluted share are estimated in the range of 90 cents to 97 cents, as compared with $1.12 for the year-ago second quarter. The company expects diluted earnings per share for 2006 will be in the range of $3.00 to $3.15.