Davis Index: Market Intelligence for the Global Metals and Recycled Materials Markets

Century aluminum is likely to feel the effects of the low aluminum prices of April and May in Q3 2020 sales and shipments, the company indicated while reporting its Q2 2020 earnings.


According to Michael Bless, Century’s president and chief executive officer, the metal’s prices have improved from April-May after manufacturing and car-making facilities restarted operations after the COVID-19 related shutdowns. 


However, he added, that while prices had seen a slight uptick, they continued to remain depressed because of “the surge of primary aluminum imports from Canada” that have been increasing since the country was exempted from Sec 232 tariffs in May 2019. This factor could impact the company’s third quarter earnings.


Bless said that despite the impact, Century was in a good position to address new challenges and scenarios and would be focusing on its long-term strategic initiatives for the rest of the year.


In Q2 2020, the company’s shipments increased 3.4pc to 210,309mt from 203,380mt in the same quarter last year and 3.6pc from 202,905mt in Q1 2020.  


However, lower aluminum prices and premiums in H1 2020 as well as the second quarter affected the Chicago-based aluminum maker’s sales. In the first half, Century’s sales fell to $823.1mn from $963.2mn in the first six months last year. Sales dropped to $401.9mn in Q2 from $473.1mn in the same quarter last year and from $421.2mn during the first three months of the year.


The company’s net loss in Q2 2020 amounted to $26.9mn up from $20.7mn reported during the same quarter last year and from $2.7mn in the previous quarter.

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