Two major U.S. steelmakers reported contrasting quarterly results Tuesday, but both gave positive outlooks for the industry as improving economic conditions boost demand and prices.
"We expect to report a significant overall operating profit (in the second quarter), primarily due to the realization of price increases in our flat-rolled segment," U.S. Steel Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John Surma said.
AK Steel said it expects a strong increase in second-quarter steel shipments from the first quarter with average per-ton selling prices 7 percent higher.
U.S. Steel posted a third consecutive quarterly first-quarter loss, but higher steel prices and shipments helped it trim the red ink from the previous year.
The net loss narrowed to $86 million, or 60 cents per share, from $157 million, or $1.10 per share, a year earlier, the Pittsburgh-based company said.
AK Steel posted a higher first-quarter net profit of $8.7 million, or 8 cents per share, compared with $1.9 million, or 2 cents per share, for the same quarter of 2010.
AK Steel's shares rose more than 3 percent to $16.70 in premarket trading on the New York Stock Exchange, while U.S. Steel's was up slightly at $52.10.
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