Steel Products

SSAB USA Down 73% in Q4 YOY

Written by Sandy Williams

Written by: Sandy Williams

Swedish steelmaker SSAB reported EBIT for its American division of $17.6 million in the fourth quarter, down 73 percent from $64 million in 2011. Earnings for the full year were reported at $243 million, down from $327 million in 2011.

Demand in the fourth quarter was in line with the third quarter in most segments. Shipments were 9 percent lower than fourth quarter 2011 and 2 percent lower than third quarter 2012. Crude steel production dropped by 4 percent for the quarter and steel production dropped 7 percent.

Prices decreased by 4 percent for niche steels and by 12 percent for standard steels compared to third quarter of 2012. Price agreements in 2012 for coal in the U.S. were 30 percent lower than 2011 and the current agreement is valid until March 31, 2013. SSAB reported U.S. scrap prices were 4 percent higher by the end of the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter, and 16 percent lower than the same period in 2011.

Looking forward in 2013, a planned outage at the Montpelier facility in the first and second quarters will affect earnings by $23-$32 million. U.S. steel demand is still affected by concern over financial stability but may see an uptick due to restocking in the first and second quarter.

Overall, SSAB reported EBIT loss of $103.4 million in the fourth quarter, a negative for the second quarter in a row. In the same period in 2011, SSAB reported a profit of $50 million. A loss of $2.5 billion was reported for the full year 2012. Crude steel production in 2012 compared to 2011, declined by 7 percent and steel production declined by 9 percent. Sales dropped 13 percent for the year.

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