Fourth quarter net sales were $939 million, down $60 million, or 5.9%, from the fourth quarter of 2017. After adjusting for acquisitions, divestitures, changes in foreign exchange rates, pass-through paper sales and the adoption of new revenue recognition standards, organic net sales decreased 3.2% from the fourth quarter of 2017. The decrease in organic net sales was largely due to lower volume in Magazine, Catalogs & Logistics and Office Products partially offset by volume growth in Book and price increases in Office Products.
The fourth quarter 2018 net loss was $16 million, or $0.47 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $58 million, or $1.68 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2017. Net cash provided by operating activities was $188 million compared to $147 million in the fourth quarter of 2017.
“We are very pleased with our free cash flow generation in the fourth quarter, despite continued challenging industry conditions,” said Thomas J. Quinlan III, LSC Communications’ chairman, president and CEO. “As we enter 2019, we continue to focus on providing innovative customer solutions and ways to better reduce costs and improve productivity resulting in increased earnings. We continue to expect to close on the merger with Quad/Graphics in mid-2019.”