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Reliance Steel & Aluminum 2009 Sales Down 39%

CEO: Fourth quarter demand and pricing at 'better levels than expected.'

Metals service center Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. (NYSE: RS), Los Angeles, CA, reported sales for 2009 were $5.32 billion, down 39% from 2008 sales. Profit was $148.2 million, compared with profit of $482.8 million a year ago.

(The 2009 fiscal year financial results include in cost of sales a pre-tax LIFO credit of $305 million, compared with a pre-tax LIFO charge, or expense, of $109.2 million for the 2008 year.)

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For the fourth quarter, sales were $1.27 billion, down 41% from the prior year period. Profit increased 39% to $92.1 million.

Business conditions during the fourth quarter improved as average pricing increased 5% compared to the 2009 third quarter, and tons sold decreased only 3%. For the 2009 year, carbon steel sales were 56% of revenues; aluminum sales were 18%; stainless steel sales were 13%; alloy sales were 7%; other sales were 4% and toll processing sales were 2%.

\”As we stated in our fourth quarter earnings update, both demand and pricing were at better levels than expected, given the seasonal pressures that we typically experience in the fourth quarter,\” CEO David H. Hannah said. \”As we enter 2010, we are a financially stronger company than a year ago.\”

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