US service centre chain Ryerson witnessed a strong uptick in both profits and revenues during 2018, a pattern it expects to continue throughout 2019,Kallanish learns from the company’s year-end earnings review.
Ryerson earned $106 million on sales of $4.4 billion in 2018, up from a profit of $17.1m on sales of $3.4 billion. Ryerson’s 2018 net income includes a gain-on-bargain purchase of $70m due to the company’s July acquisition of Central Steel and Wire.
On-year, Ryerson saw average selling prices rise by 16% and average tons shipped rise by 4.1%.
In 2019, Ryerson expects relatively strong end-user demand to offset weather issues experienced during the first quarter.
“Customer sentiment continues to be positive as we moved through the early part of 2019 supported by stronger year-over-year shipments out of the gate despite some severe winter weather across the network in late January through mid-February,” the company says. “We believe average selling prices remain well supported year-over-year and gross margins have begun to expand gradually after bottoming in mid-February. We expect to see continued strength in most of our end-markets while commodity pricing across carbon, aluminum, and nickel has stabilised or moved higher compared to levels transacted in the fourth quarter of 2018.”