Is Cleveland-Cliffs Well Placed amid Changing US Steel Dynamics?



Earnings season comes to an end

The second-quarter earnings season has come to an end for US steelmakers. Cleveland-Cliffs (CLF) released its second-quarter earnings results before the market opened on July 20.

CLF reported EPS of $0.76, beating the consensus estimate of $0.53 by 43.4%. Its revenue came in at $714.3 million, higher than analysts’ consensus estimate of $642 million.

The company’s US sales volumes rose 38% YoY (year-over-year), while its realized revenue also showed positive momentum and rose 16% YoY to $112.60 per ton. The company increased its guidance for its US sales volumes and its expectations for its US realized prices.

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Mixed earnings season

The company’s US steel peers (SLX) U.S. Steel Corporation (X), Nucor (NUE), and ArcelorMittal (MT) posted better-than-expected earnings results. AK Steel’s (AKS) earnings, on the other hand, lagged analysts’ estimates.

Series overview

In this series, we’ll gauge the direction CLF stock could take in 2018. The stock has outperformed most of its peers so far in the year, returning 44% year-to-date. We’ll see whether the company can continue this performance in 2018.

We’ll also analyze indicators related to the domestic US steel market and the seaborne iron ore market. Indicators such as US iron ore imports, US steel demand, domestic steel prices, Chinese steel demand, and seaborne iron ore demand can help us see what could drive steel prices and steelmakers in the coming months.


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