LANCASTER, Pa., March 29 (Reuters) - Building materials company Armstrong Holdings Inc., which filed for bankruptcy protection in December due to rising asbestos-related liabilities, on Thursday said weaker sales and higher raw material and energy costs helped cause a net loss of more than $100 million for the fourth quarter.

The Lancaster, Pa.-based company said it posted a net loss of $100.3 million, or $2.48 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31 vs. a steeper net loss of $178.5 million, or $4.46 per share, a year ago.

Chairman Michael Lockhart said in a statement that he expected volume and pricing pressure to continue into 2001.

Sales in the fourth quarter dropped to $659.1 million from $722.8 million a year ago, the company said, led by a 26 percent decline in floor coverings sales.