CSC Steel expects prices to remain firm, but whole year outlook is “less predictable” – Business News


KUALA LUMPUR: CSC Steel Holdings Bhd net profit jumped in the last quarter ended Dec 31 on the back of a significant increase in steel prices.

The company expects steel prices to remain firm, at least until the first half of the year, thanks to China’s clampdown on polluting industries, it said in a filing with Bursa Malaysia on Monday.

“However, the outlook for the second half of 2018 becomes less predictable and very much dependent on the actions to be taken by US president Donald Trump administration on the outcomes of section 232 investigation,” it said.

Section 232 of the US Trade Expansion Act affords the US President broad powers in determining whether certain imports have a negative effect on the country’s national security.

Trump, had last month, imposed tariff on imported solar panels. Malaysian-based solar manufacturers have said that the import tariff would have a “big” impact on the industry.

Meanwhile, CSC Steel sees a challenging year ahead.

“The group expects business volume for  the first quarter of 2018 to be impacted by Chinese New Year festivities and the rest of 2018 to remain  challenging as the Malaysia steel markets continue to be liberalized and new steel mills come on stream within ASEAN countries taking advantage of the unimpeded access to markets within ASEAN under the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement,” it said.

CSC Steel posted a net profit of RM14.8mil in the last quarter, that lifted its full year earnings to RM59.8mil, or 16.2 sen a share. The company has proposed a final dividend payout of five sen a share.

Read more : thestar

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