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CSN Slumps to 8-Year Low as Profit Misses Estimates: Rio Mover

May 16 (Bloomberg) -- Cia. Siderurgica Nacional SA, the third-largest Brazilian steelmaker, dropped to the lowest in almost eight years after posting a first-quarter profit that missed analysts’ estimates.

CSN, as the company is known, fell 0.2 percent to 6.70 reais at the close in Sao Paulo, the lowest closing level since Oct. 20, 2005.

CSN said yesterday that net income for controlling shareholders dropped 75 percent to 27.3 million reais ($13.5 million) from $110.7 million a year earlier, missing a 168.5 million reais average estimate that excludes some items of eight analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Profit at the Sao Paulo-based company was affected by a worse-than-expected operational performance in its mining unit, Citigroup Inc. analysts Alexander Hacking and Thiago Ojea said.

“The main weakness was iron-ore sales,” the analysts said in a research note today. “Concerns include high debt, investment priorities and limited visibility on corporate strategy.”

The steel outlook in Brazil is poised to recover during 2013 after touching a low point in the first part of the year, with prices gaining an average of 5 percent to 8 percent in the second quarter, CSN’s executive director for steel sales Luis Martinez said.

“From now on, the scenario is much more positive,” he said on an earnings conference call today. “We can think about new price increases in the second half.”

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: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net

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