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Commercial Metals Rises on Q4 Earnings Beat

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Commercial Metals Company (CMC - Free Report) logged profit of $4.1 million or 3 cents per share in fourth-quarter fiscal 2013 (ended Aug 31), representing its eighth straight quarter of profitability. The company posted a profit of $30.2 million or 26 cents a share a year ago. Barring asset impairment charges of $25.9 million (or 22 cents a share) related to its Australian operations, earnings were 25 cents per share, outstripping the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 17 cents. 
The Texas-based steel and metals maker’s shares rose around 1.7% following the earnings announcement. Its shares are up roughly 26% so far this year. 
Revenues fell roughly 7% year over year to around $1,699 million, falling short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,815 million. Decline across all business segments, except Americas Fabrication, led to lower sales in the quarter.
For fiscal 2013, profit was $77.3 million or 66 cents per share, down 63% from $207.5 million or $1.78 per share a year ago, on revenues of $6,890 million (down 10%).
Revenues from Commercial Metals’ Americas Recycling segment slipped 3.5% to roughly $347 million in the reported quarter as declines in nonferrous volume and pricing more than offset higher ferrous selling prices and volumes.
The Americas Mills segment registered sales of roughly $465 million, down 6% year over year. Volume fell 7% in the reported quarter.
On a positive note, revenues from the Americas Fabrication unit inched up around 1% to $384 million, benefiting from improved selling prices and order bookings.
Challenging conditions in Europe coupled with a double-digit decline in shipments contributed to a 17% decline in revenues from the International Mill division to $223 million.
Revenues from the International Marketing and Distribution segment fell 18% to $503 million, impacted by soft Eurozone market conditions.
Commercial Metals ended fiscal 2013 with cash and cash equivalents of $379 million, up 44% year over year. Total long-term debt increased roughly 11% year over year to $1,284 million. Operating cash flows for the full year declined 25% year over year to roughly $148 million.
Moving ahead, Commercial Metals sees improved margins in the International Mill division. The company’s move to strengthen its Australian operations is expected to bear fruit in the forthcoming quarters. 
Commercial Metals currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Other steel producing companies worth considering are Companhia Siderurgica Nacional (SID - Free Report) , Shiloh Industries Inc. (SHLO - Free Report) and Gerdau S.A. . While both Companhia Siderurgica and Shiloh hold a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Gerdau retains a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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