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Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. (NYSE: RS), Los Angeles, CA, reported sales for the first quarter of $2.5 billion, up 26.1 percent from the first quarter of 2013. Profit for the quarter rose 4.2 percent to $87.2 million.
"The overall improvement in demand that we experienced in the second half of 2013 continued, in addition to the normal seasonal pick-up compared to the fourth quarter, with tons sold up 8.9 percent. Our average selling price per ton sold increased 1.7 percent compared to the prior quarter,” said David H. Hannah, chairman and CEO. “Both demand and pricing increased sequentially for three months in a row during the first quarter, a trend we have not experienced since early 2012.”
Demand in aerospace is expected to improve in 2014, although the company expects pricing pressure to remain. Automotive is also expected to generate solid performance again in 2014. Energy (oil & gas) demand is expected to modestly improve in 2014, along with slightly better pricing. Reliance expected modest improvement in demand and pricing in heavy industry.
Nonresidential construction is showing the beginning signs of a possible recovery, albeit at significantly reduced demand levels from its peak, according to the press release from the company. Reliance is "cautiously optimistic that this important end-market will show further improvement throughout 2014."