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Bluescope Steel reduces full year loss

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Bluescope Steel has narrowed its net loss to $82.3 million for the year to June 30, and made an underlying profit of $112.3 million.

AAP reports that the loss was an improvement on the previous year’s loss of $107.1 million. The steel maker experienced higher margins and sales volumes for the period, but these were offset by higher restructuring costs.

Specifically, restructuring costs for the year totalled over $55 million. In addition, writedowns to Australian operations totalled $87.6 million.

BlueScope Chairman, Graham Kraehe AO, said in a statement, “… we have actively invested to lower our cost base, to better serve customers and to grow our iron sands exports. These actions have laid a solid foundation for a future return to paying dividends.”

Earnings from Asia and North America increased by 12 per cent. However, the company's building components and distribution business made an underlying loss of $22.8 million.

Eearnings from the Australian business more than tripled due to increased volumes and higher margins. And earnings from the New Zealand business increased by over 100 per cent.

BlueScope’s Managing Director and CEO, Mr Paul O’Malley said, “I wish to thank the BlueScope team for delivering on our turnaround plan and achieving EBIT of $249.7 million, a significant increase of 237% on the prior year, whilst maintaining low gearing.

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