Steelmaker Evraz shines after its first-half numbers beat forecasts

Suzie Neuwirth
RUSSIAN steelmaker Evraz’s share price rose over seven per cent yesterday morning, after posting half-year earnings that beat analysts’ forecasts.

Earnings fell 20.7 per cent to $939m (£606m), but this was 12 per cent above expectations, Denis Gabrielik, analyst at Otkritie Investment Bank, told City A.M.

The FTSE 250 firm – which is part-owned by oligarch Roman Abramovich – attributed the decline in earnings to the weaker steel price environment. “Prices remained weak due to excessive capacity in both the Eurozone and China, the perception of softening economic growth in China and a longer term shift to a less resource intensive growth model as well as due to sluggish demand in the Eurozone,” said the firm.

“The global steel market is expected to remain challenging during the second half of the year as structural problems continue to dominate the industry.”

Evraz also announced that it had scrapped its interim dividend but Gabrielik said this was not a surprise given the company’s focus on debt reduction. Shares closed 7.5 per cent higher at 134p.