Nucor (NUE) Lowers Q3 GAAP EPS Outlook

September 18, 2012 9:06 AM EDT
Nucor Corporation (NYSE: NUE) announced today guidance for its third quarter ending September 29, 2012.

Nucor expects third quarter results to be in the range of $0.30 to $0.35 per diluted share. These projected results are lower than the third quarter of 2011 earnings of $0.57 per diluted share and similar to the second quarter of 2012 earnings of $0.35 per diluted share. Third quarter of 2012 projected results include the negative impact of approximately $26 million ($0.05 per diluted share) of inventory purchase accounting adjustments related to our acquisition of Skyline Steel LLC ("Skyline") and a loss on the sale of the assets of Nucor Wire Products Pennsylvania, Inc. of $17.6 million ($0.04 per diluted share). We expect minimal charges related to Skyline purchase accounting adjustments in the fourth quarter. Earnings in the second quarter of 2012 included an impairment charge related to our Duferdofin Nucor S.r.l. joint venture of $0.09 per diluted share and a charge of $0.02 per diluted share for purchase accounting adjustments and the elimination of profit associated with our steel mills' sales to Skyline post-acquisition. Projected third quarter results also include an estimated LIFO credit of $80.0 million ($0.16 per diluted share) compared to a credit of $14.5 million in the second quarter of 2012 ($0.03 per diluted share) and a charge of $28.0 million in the third quarter of 2011 ($0.05 per diluted share).

Our projected earnings for the third quarter of 2012 excluding one-time charges are consistent with the qualitative guidance included in our earnings release for the second quarter of 2012 which stated, "We currently expect to see a modest reduction in earnings exclusive of oneā€“time charges for the third quarter of 2012."

The Street sees EPS of $0.42.

Our lower performance in the third quarter of 2012 is mainly due to decreased operating performance at our steel mills, which experienced decreased profitability, particularly at our sheet mills, compared to the second quarter of 2012. Lower steel mill margins are primarily the result of rising imports, which began trending up at the end of 2011 and have continued through the first nine months of 2012. Slowing economic growth both domestically and globally are also factors. Volatility in scrap prices, together with a combination of political and economic uncertainty in global markets that is beginning to affect steel buyer confidence, has also disrupted supply chain stocking levels. The strongest end markets continue to be manufactured goods including heavy equipment, energy and automotive.

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