News Releases

Nucor Reports Results for Fourth Quarter and Year Ended 2011

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Jan. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Nucor Corporation (NYSE: NUE) announced today consolidated net earnings of $778.2 million, or $2.45 per diluted share, for the full year 2011, an increase of more than fivefold over net earnings of $134.1 million, or $0.42 per diluted share for the full year 2010.

Nucor reported consolidated net earnings of $137.1 million, or $0.43 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with a net loss of $11.4 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2010 and net earnings of $181.5 million, or $0.57 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2011.  

The 2011 results were impacted by a non-cash gain of $29.0 million ($0.06 per diluted share) recognized in the fourth quarter for the correction of an actuarial calculation related to the medical plan covering certain eligible early retirees.  This calculation did not have a material impact on any previously reported results.  

Nucor incurred a charge to value inventories using the last-in, first-out (LIFO) method of accounting of $142.8 million ($0.28 per diluted share) for the full year 2011, compared with a charge of $164.0 million in 2010 ($0.32 per diluted share). The LIFO charge in the fourth quarter of 2011 was $51.8 million ($0.11 per diluted share), compared with a charge of $28.0 million in the third quarter of 2011 ($0.05 per diluted share) and a charge of $23.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2010 ($0.04 per diluted share).  The fourth quarter LIFO charge was approximately $27 million less than anticipated at the time we gave our quantitative guidance.

Pre-operating and start-up costs of new facilities were $97.1 million for the full year 2011, a decrease from $174.8 million for the full year 2010.  Pre-operating and start-up costs were $20.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to $17.0 million in the third quarter of 2011 and $39.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2010.  The decrease in pre-operating and start-up costs from the prior year was due to several projects coming out of start-up, including the special bar quality ("SBQ") mill in Memphis, Tennessee, the wire rod products mill in Kingman, Arizona, and the galvanizing line in Decatur, Alabama.  

For the full year 2011, Nucor's consolidated net sales increased 26% to $20.02 billion, compared with $15.84 billion for 2010.  Average sales price per ton increased 21% from full year 2010. Total tons shipped to outside customers were 23,044,000 tons, an increase of 5% over 2010 levels.

Nucor's consolidated net sales decreased 8% to $4.83 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared with $5.25 billion in the third quarter of 2011 and increased 25% compared with $3.85 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010.  Average sales price per ton decreased 6% from the third quarter of 2011 and increased 18% from the fourth quarter of 2010.  Total tons shipped to outside customers were 5,683,000 tons in the fourth quarter of 2011, a decrease of 2% from the third quarter of 2011 and an increase of 7% over last year's fourth quarter.  

The average scrap and scrap substitute cost per ton used for the full year 2011 was $439, an increase of 25% over $351 in 2010.  The average scrap and scrap substitute cost per ton used in the fourth quarter of 2011 was $441, a decrease of 2% from $449 in the third quarter and an increase of 23% over $359 in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Overall operating rates at our steel mills were 74% for the full year 2011, increasing from 70% in 2010 and 54% in 2009.  Steel mill utilization rates for the fourth quarter of 2011 (71%) decreased from the third quarter (74%) and increased from last year's fourth quarter (68%).  

For the full year 2011, total energy costs increased approximately $1 per ton from the prior year primarily due to higher electricity unit costs.  In the fourth quarter of 2011, total energy costs decreased approximately $5 per ton from the third quarter of 2011, primarily due to lower electricity unit costs, and were unchanged from the fourth quarter of 2010.    

Construction is continuing on our 2,500,000-ton direct reduced iron ("DRI") facility in Louisiana. The majority of the equipment will begin arriving in 2012, and we are on schedule for completion of construction and beginning of start-up in mid-2013.

Our liquidity position remains strong with $3.15 billion in cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments, and restricted cash and investments. In December, we increased the amount of our revolving credit facility to $1.5 billion and extended its maturity date to December 2016. We have no outstanding borrowings under the revolving credit facility.

In December, Nucor's board of directors increased the quarterly cash dividend to $0.365 per share.  The dividend is payable on February 10, 2012 to stockholders of record on December 30, 2011 and is Nucor's 155th consecutive quarterly cash dividend.  Nucor continues a record of 39 consecutive years of increases to its regular dividend.

Fourth quarter earnings of $0.43 per share were significantly better than our quantitative guidance of between $0.22 and $0.27 per share, but as we expected were lower than third quarter 2011 earnings of $0.57 per share.  The declining trend in steel margins appears to have bottomed overall as December was our most profitable month in the fourth quarter.  The trend is more positive at the bar mills and beam mills where margins per ton improved in the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter of 2011.  Margins at our plate and sheet mills continued to be impacted by higher import levels that began in the second quarter of 2011 and new domestic sheet mill supply.  Selling prices have recently trended up for both our plate and sheet steel mills while scrap prices have been flat to slightly down.  We therefore expect earnings in the first quarter of 2012 to be improved from fourth quarter 2011 levels, after adjusting for one-time benefits received in the fourth quarter.  End markets such as automotive, heavy equipment, energy and general manufacturing have continued to experience improvements in demand, benefitting special bar quality, sheet and plate products.  We are also seeing small but encouraging signs of improvement in our construction products business.

Nucor and affiliates are manufacturers of steel products, with operating facilities primarily in the U.S. and Canada. Products produced include: carbon and alloy steel -- in bars, beams, sheet and plate; steel joists and joist girders; steel deck; fabricated concrete reinforcing steel; cold finished steel; steel fasteners; metal building systems; steel grating and expanded metal; and wire and wire mesh. Nucor, through The David J. Joseph Company, also brokers ferrous and nonferrous metals, pig iron and HBI/DRI; supplies ferro-alloys; and processes ferrous and nonferrous scrap. Nucor is North America's largest recycler.

Certain statements contained in this news release are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. The words "believe," "expect," "project," "will," "should," "could" and similar expressions are intended to identify those forward-looking statements. Factors that might cause the Company's actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: (1) the sensitivity of the results of our operations to prevailing steel prices and the changes in the supply and cost of raw materials, including scrap steel; (2) market demand for steel products; (3) energy costs and availability; and (4) competitive pressure on sales and pricing, including competition from imports and substitute materials. These and other factors are outlined in Nucor's regulatory filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including those in Nucor's December 31, 2010 Annual Report on Form 10-K. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release speak only as of this date, and Nucor does not assume any obligation to update them.

You are invited to listen to the live broadcast of Nucor's conference call in which management will discuss Nucor's fourth quarter results on January 26, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. eastern time.  The conference call will be available over the Internet at www.nucor.com, under Investor Relations.  

Unaudited figures are as follows:

TONNAGE DATA

(in thousands)


















Quarter Ended December 31,


Year Ended December 31,




2011


2010


Percentage Change


2011


2010


Percentage Change

Steel mills production


4,765


4,472


7%


19,561


18,258


7%

Steel mills total shipments


4,933


4,568


8%


20,125


18,573


8%















Sales tons to outside customers:














Steel mills


4,132


3,840


8%


16,796


15,821


6%


Joist


69


74


-7%


288


276


4%


Deck


78


76


3%


312


306


2%


Cold finished


113


111


2%


494


462


7%


Fabricated concrete














reinforcing steel


266


230


16%


1,074


981


9%


Other


1,025


1,003


2%


4,080


4,173


-2%




5,683


5,334


7%


23,044


22,019


5%



CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF EARNINGS (Unaudited)

(In thousands, except per share data)










Quarter Ended December 31,


Year Ended December 31,










2011


2010


2011


2010









Net sales

$4,829,677


$3,853,750


$20,023,564


$15,844,627









Costs, expenses and other:








 Cost of products sold

4,461,568


3,721,207


18,074,967


15,000,962

 Marketing, administrative and other expenses

108,050


102,145


520,648


391,375

 Equity in losses (earnings)








of unconsolidated affiliates

(4,147)


601


10,043


32,082

 Interest expense, net

40,151


40,297


166,094


153,093


4,605,622


3,864,250


18,771,752


15,577,512

Earnings (loss) before income taxes and








noncontrolling interests

224,055


(10,500)


1,251,812


267,115

Provision for (benefit from) income taxes

65,882


(19,387)


390,828


60,792

Net earnings

158,173


8,887


860,984


206,323

Earnings attributable to








noncontrolling interests

21,117


20,246


82,796


72,231

Net earnings (loss) attributable to








Nucor stockholders

$   137,056


$    (11,359)


$     778,188


$     134,092









Net earnings (loss) per share:








 Basic

$0.43


($0.04)


$2.45


$0.42

 Diluted

$0.43


($0.04)


$2.45


$0.42









Average shares outstanding:








 Basic

317,393


316,329


316,997


315,962

 Diluted

317,464


316,329


317,161


316,510



CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (Unaudited)

(In thousands)












Dec. 31, 2011


Dec. 31, 2010

ASSETS





Current assets:






Cash and cash equivalents


$        1,200,645


$        1,325,406


Short-term investments


1,362,641


1,153,623


Accounts receivable, net


1,710,773


1,439,828


Inventories, net


1,987,257


1,557,574


Other current assets


446,765


384,744










Total current assets


6,708,081


5,861,175








Property, plant and equipment, net


3,755,604


3,852,118








Restricted cash and investments


585,833


598,482








Goodwill


1,830,661


1,836,294








Other intangible assets, net


784,640


856,125








Other assets


905,531


917,716










Total assets


$      14,570,350


$      13,921,910








LIABILITIES





Current liabilities:






Short-term debt


$               1,826


$             13,328


Long-term debt due within one year


650,000


-


Accounts payable


958,645


896,703


Salaries, wages and related accruals


333,341


207,168


Accrued expenses and other current liabilities


452,247


387,239










Total current liabilities


2,396,059


1,504,438








Long-term debt due after one year


3,630,200


4,280,200








Deferred credits and other liabilities


837,511


806,578










Total liabilities


6,863,770


6,591,216








EQUITY





Nucor stockholders' equity:






Common stock


150,496


150,181


Additional paid-in capital


1,756,534


1,711,518


Retained earnings


7,111,566


6,795,988


Accumulated other comprehensive loss,







net of income taxes


(38,177)


(27,776)


Treasury stock


(1,505,534)


(1,509,841)



Total Nucor stockholders' equity


7,474,885


7,120,070








Noncontrolling interests


231,695


210,624










Total equity


7,706,580


7,330,694










Total liabilities and equity


$      14,570,350


$      13,921,910



CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS (Unaudited)

(In thousands)












Year Ended December 31,












2011


2010








Operating activities:





Net earnings

$               860,984


$               206,323


Adjustments:






Depreciation

522,571


512,147



Amortization

67,829


70,455



Stock-based compensation

49,003


43,041



Deferred income taxes

58,051


138,262



Equity in losses of unconsolidated affiliates

10,043


32,082



Changes in assets and liabilities (exclusive of acquisitions):







Accounts receivable

(274,920)


(310,188)




Inventories

(433,696)


(231,913)




Accounts payable

63,571


186,417




Federal income taxes

930


180,821




Salaries, wages and related accruals

129,340


56,641




Other

(21,094)


(10,684)








Cash provided by operating activities

1,032,612


873,404








Investing activities:





Capital expenditures

(440,502)


(345,294)


Investment in and advances to affiliates

(95,950)


(434,006)


Repayment of advances to affiliates

50,000


83,885


Disposition of plant and equipment

25,333


24,944


Acquisitions (net of cash acquired)

(3,959)


(64,788)


Purchases of investments

(1,494,782)


(1,323,264)


Proceeds from the sale of investments

1,285,763


394,640


Purchases of restricted investments

(564,994)


-


Proceeds from the sale of restricted investments

47,479


-


Other changes in restricted cash and investments

530,165


(598,482)








Cash used in investing activities

(661,447)


(2,262,365)








Financing activities:





Net change in short-term debt

(11,450)


11,561


Repayment of long-term debt

-


(6,000)


Proceeds from issuance of long-term debt, net of discount

-


1,198,992


Debt issuance costs

-


(4,050)


Issuance of common stock

8,097


4,687


Excess tax benefits from stock-based compensation

1,000


(700)


Distributions to noncontrolling interests

(61,720)


(55,380)


Cash dividends

(461,518)


(457,282)


Other financing activities

30,569


-








Cash provided by (used in) financing activities

(495,022)


691,828








Effect of exchange rate changes on cash

(904)


5,558








Decrease in cash and cash equivalents

(124,761)


(691,575)








Cash and cash equivalents - beginning of year

1,325,406


2,016,981








Cash and cash equivalents - end of year

$            1,200,645


$            1,325,406



SOURCE Nucor Corporation

Nucor Executive Offices, +1-704-366-7000, or fax, +1-704-362-4208