PITTSBURGH ALJ Regional
Holdings Inc.s profits expanded as economic strength in
the middle of its fiscal year helped offset weaker steel prices
in its fiscal fourth quarter.
Ky.-based parent of merchant bar quality and special bar
quality (SBQ) flats producer Kentucky Electric Steel posted net
income of nearly $13.28 million for the year ended Sept. 30, up
16.3 percent from $11.42 million the previous year despite a
2-percent decline in revenue to $158.78 million.
ALJs net income in its
fiscal fourth quarter totaled nearly $5.93 million, up
marginally from the same period a year earlier despite revenue
tumbling 27.2 percent to $33.39 million.
ALJs fiscal year got off
to a slow start due to warm weather and lower sales of steel
used for snow removal, as well as typical seasonal weakness,
chief executive officer John Scheel said in a statement
Wednesday. That period was followed by six months of strength,
driven by demand from the cold-drawn bar, energy and
agricultural sectors, but that trend reversed course at the end
of the fiscal year.
"The (fiscal) fourth quarter saw
raw material pricing, which had expanded disproportionately
with market demand, come back to Earth, bringing steel prices
along (with it)," Scheel said.
The drop in steel prices, along
with economic uncertainty, dragged down margins and sales in
the fiscal fourth quarter, Scheel said, although an
extraordinary gain of nearly $2.7 million related to the
write-off of discontinued liabilities helped soften the impact
on both annual and quarterly results.