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Usiminas Net Beats Estimates as Sales Fall Less Than Costs

Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais SA (USIM5), the second-largest Brazilian steelmaker by output, posted fourth-quarter profit that exceeded estimates.

Net income excluding minority interests dropped 84 percent to 44.6 million reais ($25.4 million), from 285.8 million reais a year earlier, Usiminas, as the Belo Horizonte, Brazil-based company is known, said today in a regulatory filing. The company was expected to post a net loss excluding some items of 9.1 million reais, the average of five analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

Net sales dropped 8.7 percent to 2.82 billion reais in the period, less than the 10 percent decline in the cost of goods sold, Usiminas said. Quarterly crude steel output declined 5 percent to 1.51 million metric tons from last year, Usiminas said.

Steelmakers in Brazil struggled last year as slowing growth in Latin America’s biggest economy reduced demand from manufacturers of cars and home appliances. Production of flat- rolled steel, which Usiminas supplies to carmakers, declined 6.6 percent in Brazil last year, according to the Brazilian Steel Institute.

Usiminas fell 3 percent to 12.15 reais in Sao Paulo yesterday, the most since Feb. 10. The stock dropped about 42 percent in the past 12 months. Earnings were released before the opening of markets.

Gerdau SA (GGBR4), based in Porto Alegre, Brazil, is Latin America’s largest steelmaker.

(Usiminas will host a conference call with investors today at 10 a.m. New York time.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Juan Pablo Spinetto in Rio de Janeiro at jspinetto@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at dcrofts@bloomberg.net

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