October 18, 2018 / 1:44 PM / a month ago

Nucor profits nearly triples as steel tariffs kick in

A Nucor Corporation steel production facility is pictured in Convent, Louisiana, U.S., June 11, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman/File Photo

(Reuters) - U.S. steelmaker Nucor Corp reported a tripling in profit in the third quarter as a strong U.S. economy and President Donald Trump’s hefty tariffs on steel imports supported robust growth in both shipments and prices.

Average prices per ton achieved by the country’s largest producer rose 23 percent from the same quarter a year earlier and 7 percent from the second quarter, when the 25-percent tariff on imported competition was still kicking in.

Nucor steel mill’s shipments increased 7 percent in the quarter, while sales to external customers rose 6 percent from a year earlier.

Net sales rose to $6.74 billion from $5.2 billion, beating estimates of $6.63 billion.

Net income attributable to shareholders rose to $676.66 million in the third quarter ended Sept. 29 from $254.85 million a year earlier. The company posted earnings per share of $2.13, compared with 79 cents a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned $2.33 per share, just short of estimates of $2.35, according to I/B/E/S data from Refinitiv.

Reporting by Rachit Vats in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva

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