- Summary: In a sign of continued strength among U.S. manufacturers, U.S. Steel Corp. (NYSE:X), Ipsco Inc. (NYSEARCA:IPS) and AK Steel Holding Corp. (NYSE:AKS) reported strong second-quarter results yesterday amid high demand. They predicted steel prices would sustain their momentum in the third quarter despite concerns about global supply creeping toward excess amid some signs of a demand slowdown in China and other parts of Asia. U.S. Steel reported net income of $404 million, or $3.22 a share, compared with net of $249 million, or $1.91 a share, a year earlier. Sales rose 15% to $4.11 billion from $3.58 billion. Also for the quarter, AK Steel said its net more than tripled to $29.1 million, or 26 cents a share, while Ipsco said its net rose 23% to $156.4 million, or $3.25 a share. Steel customers in North America appear to be restocking their inventories with an average supply of 2.9 months of steel on hand in June, up from 2.7 months in May but down from the 4.1-month supply in June 2005, according to the Metal Service Center Institute in Chicago. Industry officials see no signs of a slowdown in terms of steel supplies.
- Comment on related stocks/ETFs: To learn more about steel management and inventories, read excerpts from Metal Management (MTLM) CEO Daniel Dienst's June interview in The Wall Street Transcript.
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