Worldtex announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, Elastic Corporation of America, will permanently close a narrow elastic manufacturing facility in Lexington, South Carolina. The company will continue to operate narrow elastic manufacturing plants located in Columbiana, AL; Woolwine, VA; Asheboro, NC; and Hemingway, SC."We are rationalising our manufacturing for improved flexibility to meet the changing market demand by consolidating our narrow elastic fabric operations. Production from Lexington will be shifted to other facilities," said Barry D. Setzer, chief executive officer. "We will continue to operate our most efficient facilities where a significant amount of capital expenditures for 1998 and 1999 have been invested. We expect to reduce our manufacturing cost by this operational restructuring."The closure of the Lexington facility, which will affect approximately 150 wage and salary employees, is expected to be completed by December 31, 2000."We sincerely regret the impact this will have on our employees and the community, and we will seek to help the affected employees make the transition to other employment," Setzer said, "but these changes are necessary in order to improve the financial position of our company."