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Nucor (NUE) Expects Record Q2 Earnings on Strong Demand, Prices

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Nucor Corporation NUE announced guidance for second-quarter 2021. It expects second-quarter earnings between $4.60 and $4.70 per share. Earnings for the second quarter are projected to be the highest quarterly earnings in Nucor's history, beating the prior record of $3.10 per share set in first-quarter 2021.

A non-cash impairment charge of $42 million related to the company’s leasehold interest in unproved oil and natural gas properties is included in second-quarter guidance.

Driven by strong demand supporting higher average selling prices, all three operating segments are generating strong profitability, Nucor noted. The steel mills segment is expected to witness an improvement in earnings in the second quarter compared with previous-quarter levels. The higher earnings are expected to be mainly driven by significant increase in profitability of its sheet and plate mills.

Earnings in the steel products segment are expected to increase in the second quarter from first-quarter levels. In the raw materials segment, after establishing a new record in the first quarter, earnings are expected to decline in the second quarter.

The company forecasts strong market conditions to continue in the third quarter. The profitability of the steel products segment is expected to significantly improve from second-quarter figures. Earnings are likely to increase in the steel mills segment in the third quarter as well.

Nucor also repurchased 6.7 million shares at an average price of $90.80 per share in the second quarter. It has bought back 12.1 million shares year-to-date at an average price of $75.43 per share. It has returned more than $1.1 billion to stockholders in the form of share repurchases and dividend payments year to date.

Shares of Nucor have gained 129.7% in the past year compared with 144.2% surge of the industry.

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Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Rank & Other Key Picks

Nucor currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Some other top-ranked stocks in the basic materials space are Steel Dynamics, Inc. STLD, Olin Corporation OLN and Cabot Corporation CBT.

Steel Dynamics has a projected earnings growth rate of around 247.5% for the current year. The company’s shares have surged 132.4% in a year. It currently flaunts a Zacks Rank #1. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Olin has an expected earnings growth rate of around 506.7% for the current year. The company’s shares have skyrocketed 277% in the past year. It currently sports a Zacks Rank #1.

Cabot has an expected earnings growth rate of around 126% for the current fiscal. The company’s shares have surged 62.3% in the past year. It currently sports a Zacks Rank #1.

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