Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) Earnings Up Fivefold

Cliffs Natural Resources Inc (NYSE:CLF) reported earnings for the second quarter surged by over five times what they were the year before in the same quarter, based on strong iron ore demand and higher prices.

Profits in the quarter increased to $260.7 million, or $1.92 a share, up from $45.5 million last year, or 36 cents a share. It was still below the $2.02 a share analysts had been looking for.

The earnings also had the benefit of iron ore prices rising to their peak level over the last 12 months during the quarter, making you wonder what lies ahead in what appears to be more economic slowdown in the steel sector.

Second quarter commodity prices were solid in general, and has helped many raw materials companies look good.

Now the obvious question is where do they go from here, as the global economy looks somewhat feeble at best.

Even in a slower economy though, iron ore demand should remain fairly strong, at least in the short term, and that could bode well for Cliffs Natural Resources and other iron ore producers.

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