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Nov. 24, 2015, 4:48 PM
- AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) appoints Jaime Vasquez as its new CFO and VP of finance, effective Jan. 1, replacing Roger Newport, who already was named the company's new CEO.
- Vasquez was Director of Finance upon joining AKS in 2014, after earning 30 years of finance, investor relations and sales management experience.
Nov. 24, 2015, 9:14 AM
- U.S. Steel (NYSE:X) -3.8% premarket after BofA Merrill Lynch cuts its stock price target to $3 from $7 and says it has concerns about the company's liquidity.
- The firm also cuts its estimated 2016 hot rolled coil forecast to an average $455/short ton from $475.
- Yesterday the company announced the idling of operations at its Granite City, Ill., plant.
- Also, AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) -4.3% premarket.
Nov. 10, 2015, 2:21 PM
- Trade cases will not be enough to lift prices and margins for steel companies such as U.S. Steel (X +1%) and AK Steel (AKS +2.9%), Barclays analysts believe.
- "The just-determined duties are a good step... and the trend in trade protections by other countries is an effective pushback, but the mills’ strategy has to be bigger and more proactive in response to what will likely remain a persistent environment of global oversupply," Barclays says.
- The firm says the most likely outcome over the next several months appears to be a modest emergence from the trough, with Steel Dynamics (STLD -1.3%) and Nucor (NUE -0.4%) best positioned to emerge relatively stronger.
Nov. 4, 2015, 3:48 PM
- Steel company shares are sliding after U.S. Steel (X -14.3%) reported weaker than expected Q3 results and warned of sharply lower shipments and realized prices for 2015 than it previously projected.
- The company drastically reduced its full year adjusted EBITDA guidance to $225M from an earlier forecast for $700M-$900M, and said commercial markets are not improving as management had expected; steel selling prices reversed direction in Q3 as excessively high levels of imports and lower steel scrap prices caused spot prices to reach new lows for the year.
- Deutsche Bank downgrades the stock to Hold from Buy, citing the Q3 miss and dreary outlook.
- Also: AKS -4.2%, CLF -2.2%, NUE -1.6%, CMC -1.2%, STLD -0.9%, RS -0.3%.
Nov. 3, 2015, 4:45 PM
- The U.S. set preliminary import duties on corrosion-resistant steel products from China, India, Italy and South Korea, but they are not nearly as heavy as many observers had expected, and steel company stocks (NYSEARCA:SLX) initially fell after the announcement at ~3:00.
- While the preliminary duties on China are high, as expected, duties on Korea and Italy were "much smaller than expected," while there were no duties for Taiwan, which industry followers consider “disappointing," according to Axiom Capital's Gordon Johnson.
- Axiom sees the news as a slight loss for U.S. steel industry participants, as it suggests incremental duties on outstanding trade cases will focus on China, with little emphasis on other countries China can easily use as an intermediary to get steel into the U.S.
- X +0.6% in regular trading but -8.1% AH; AKS -2.9% in regular trading and -2.4% AH.
- Also, in regular trading: CLF +7.3%, JOY +0.7%, CAT +0.5%, NUE -0.3%, CMC -0.4%, RS -1.8%.
Oct. 27, 2015, 8:58 AM
- AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) says President and CEO James Wainscott will retire effective January 1; Roger Newport is appointed CEO, and Kirk Reich is named President and COO, effective upon Wainscott's retirement.
- Newport is a 20-year veteran of AKS, and has served as CFO since 2012; Reich has spent 16 years at AKS, and became a senior VP of manufacturing in 2014.
- Wainscott has served as President and CEO since 2003 and as Chairman since 2006; he will continue to serve as Chairman in a non-executive capacity after Jan. 1.
- Also: AK Steel beats by $0.12, beats on revenue
Oct. 27, 2015, 8:33 AM
- AK Steel (NYSE:AKS): Q3 EPS of $0.04 beats by $0.12.
- Revenue of $1.71B (+7.5% Y/Y) beats by $10M.
Oct. 26, 2015, 5:30 PM
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Oct. 26, 2015, 11:49 AM
- AK Steel (AKS -9.9%) plunges ~10% after BofA/Merrill downgrades shares to Underperform from Neutral with a $1 price target, slashed from $4, saying this year's sharp drop in steel prices does not appear to be fully reflected in consensus steel mill estimates, which likely will lead to disappointing guidance from AKS and U.S. Steel (X -5.9%).
- Based on the firm's forecast for lower steel prices, BofA expects AKS to lose $0.65/share in 2016, down from a prior $0.30 EPS and below the consensus estimate of a $0.10 loss; the firm also is concerned over AKS's tight cash flow position amid steep net debt and 2016 estimated EBITDA of 7.5x.
- BofA also cites AKS's fragile but improved free cash flow story, as estimated 2015 project spending falls sharply; the firm says AKS benefits from lower iron ore prices yet still relies on somewhat rigid contracts with Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF -1.5%) for more than half of its needs.
- Also: NUE -1.8%, RS -1.4%, STLD -1.3%.
Oct. 19, 2015, 2:27 PM
- There's plenty more pain ahead for steel stocks such as AK Steel (AKS -6.1%), U.S. Steel (X -3%), Steel Dynamics (STLD -4.7%), Nucor (NUE -2.8%) and ArcelorMittal (MT -4.3%), according to Cowen analyst Anthony Rizzuto.
- Prices for hot rolled coil likely need to reach the upper $400s/ton for integrated producers to return to profitability, and negative sentiment is at extreme levels, but Rizzuto says recent capacity closures and upcoming preliminary trade case determinations may serve as a catalyst for near-term price stabilization.
- Shares of steel stocks (SLX -3.9%) are all trading sharply lower after China's Q3 GDP showed the slowest annual rate of growth (+6.9%) since the financial crisis in 2009.
Oct. 16, 2015, 2:52 PM
- AK Steel (AKS -1.5%) says it will temporarily idle the blast furnace and related steelmaking operations at its Ashland Works facility in Kentucky, laying off as many as 733 workers before year-end.
- AKS cites "unfairly traded imports of carbon steel that have been flooding our shores," which have cut order intake rates, production rates, shipment volumes and selling prices.
- AKS says it does not intend to idle the hot-dip galvanizing line at Ashland Works that primarily services automotive customers.
- SunCoke Energy (SXC -6.1%), which supplies coke to AKS' Ashland and Dearborn blast furnace operations under a long-term contract, says it expects AKS to continue to honor its contract.
Oct. 5, 2015, 6:25 PM
- Allegheny Tech (NYSE:ATI) and Nucor (NYSE:NUE) are upgraded to Buy from Hold, while AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) and Century Aluminum (NASDAQ:CENX) are downgraded to Hold from Buy at Deutsche Bank, as the firm prefers stocks in the group that do not rely excessively on price hikes and have exposure to growth markets.
- The firm says the upgrades for ATI and NUE are based on valuation, and expects lower anticipated scrap costs to offset the impact of lower steel prices.
- AKS is cut to Hold with a $3 price target, citing its reliance on hikes in spot steel prices over the next 12-18 months as well as uncertainty related to contract negotiations with automotive customers, which accounts for more than 50% of shipments.
- Deutsche Bank's downgrade of CENX is based on lower aluminum pricing and production cutbacks as concern areas.
Sep. 25, 2015, 12:59 PM
- The U.S. International Trade Commission says it finds a reasonable indication that U.S producers are harmed by imports of flat hot-rolled steel products from seven countries, advancing a process that could result in import duties.
- AK Steel (AKS -5.5%), ArcelorMittal (MT -4.7%), Nucor (NUE -0.6%), U.S. Steel (X -4.8%) and Steel Dynamics (STLD -1.4%) have complained the imported goods are being sold too cheaply or have benefited from unfair government subsidies.
- AKS, for one, issues a statement praising the ITC ruling.
Sep. 18, 2015, 5:25 PM
- AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) finished flat among a sea of red in today's trade following its upbeat Q3 guidance, crediting its improved prospects to anticipated higher shipments and lower raw materials costs along with cost reductions and higher operating rates.
- Reiterating a Market Perform rating on the shares, BMO Capital says the guidance likely was driven by lower than expected unit costs, but with prices declining, with higher contract prices vs. spot still flowing through results, and with the sustainability of the unit cost improvements still unknown, the firm's $400M 2016 EBITDA estimate remains unchanged.
- Citigroup maintains an Overweight rating while noting that the recent decline in steel prices and potentially lower LIFO benefits could pressure Q4 results.
Sep. 18, 2015, 9:15 AM
Sep. 17, 2015, 5:37 PM
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