Steel Mills

Nucor Louisiana to Restart in October

Written by Sandy Williams

Nucor expects earnings to be lower in third quarter compared to second quarter. Although Nucor sheet mills are operating at high utilization rates, pricing is not keeping pace with raw material costs due to pressure from imports. Plate demand has been tepid in end-use markets following a restocking of inventory in the supply chain earlier in the year, said Nucor executives in their earnings guidance. End markets are expected to remain stable.

Unplanned outages at Nucor’s DRI facility in Louisiana during third quarter resulted in a lower earnings estimate for the raw materials segment. Production was halted in late July at Louisiana to repair the material-handling systems and other equipment. Operations are expected to resume in early October.

Finished steel imports continue to negatively impact the U.S. steel industry, said Nucor, although duties placed earlier this year on cut-to-length steel plate imports have had a positive effect.

Wrote Nucor, “We are pleased with the slow but steady progress we are achieving through the prosecution of product- and country-specific trade cases. We believe this success is due to the overwhelming evidence that our foreign competitors receive support from illegal subsidies.”

A range of $0.75 to $0.80 per diluted share is expected for third quarter, a decrease from $1.00 per diluted share in second quarter and $0.95 per diluted share in Q3 2016.

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