Nucor profit warning dumps cold water over steel stocks

Dec 12, 2006 | 02:10 PM | Scott Robertson

Nucor Corp., Charlotte, N.C., has tempered its fourth-quarter earnings guidance, spurred by weaker-than-expected steel market conditions.

Earnings for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31 are expected to land in a range of $1.05 to $1.15 per diluted share, Nucor said Tuesday, roughly on par with the $1.09 the company earned in the fourth quarter of last year but far less than record third-quarter earnings of $1.68 per share.

The warning cast a dark shadow over the sector as major steel producer stocks plunged.

Nucor's stock tumbled 7.4 percent to close at $59.60 a share Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange. Allegheny Technologies Inc., Pittsburgh, took an even bigger hit, with its shares falling 8.1 percent to $89.77 on the NYSE. Stock in Steel Dynamics Inc., Fort Wayne, Ind., fell 6.4 percent to $31.87 a share on the Nasdaq Stock Market; Mittal Steel Co. NV, Rotterdam, slid 5.2 percent to $41 on the NYSE; U.S. Steel Corp., Pittsburgh, was down 5.1 percent to $73.26 a share on the NYSE; and AK....

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