Steel Mills

Nucor Guidance Says Imports Causing Earnings Drop in Q2

Written by Sandy Williams

Nucor’s second quarter guidance indicates earnings in the range of $0.20 to $0.25 per diluted share, below analyst consensus of $0.30 per share for the quarter. Earnings decreased from Q2 2014 at $0.46 per share and are comparable to $0.21 in Q1 2015.

Overall operating performance is down from Q1. Prices are beginning to stabilize, said Nucor, but the price decreases in Q2 outpaced the decrease in raw material pricing.

Imports continue to play a significant part in earnings for the steel industry. Pricing remains under pressure from “exceptionally high levels of imports” said Nucor. Imports took 32 percent of the finished steel market in the first five months of 2015, compared with 26 percent the previous year. Nucor is encouraged by the slight decrease in imports so far in 2015.

The energy market continues to be challenging with declining rig counts and continued destocking of the energy supply chain.

Downstream products improved in Q2 due to a pick up in the residential and nonresidential construction markets.

Nucor Steel Louisiana will post an operating loss of $20 million compared to $44 million in Q1 and is near the cash breakeven point. The ramp-up in production at DRI facility went well and the facility has been operating at near full capacity since mid-April. Louisiana results were impacted by higher-cost iron ore inventory purchased in 2014.

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