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Norbord reports 2012 earnings increase

Norbord Inc. says it earned $72 million in 2012, more than half of it in the fourth quarter.


January 31, 2013
By The Canadian Press

The wood panel manufacturer’s net income in the three months ended Dec. 31 was US$38 million – beating analyst estimates by about $1 million.

The profit amounted to 86 cents US per basic share or 76 cents per share on a diluted basis.

Analysts had been looking for profit of 70 cents per share, or $37 million in total, according to estimates compiled by Thomson Reuters.

A year earlier, Toronto-based Norbord lost US$9 million in the fourth quarter and $11 million for the full financial year ended Dec. 31, 2011.

Norbord is among the companies that has benefited from a revival in U.S. house construction after a prolonged slump that contributed to the 2008-9 recession..

“Our improved 2012 financial results reflect a better-than-expected recovery in the US housing market and this recovery is gaining momentum,” said Barrie Shineton, Norbord president and CEO. “In North America, we increased shipments and were able to benefit from higher OSB pricing in the second half of last year. I expect this strong improvement in OSB demand to continue as we move through 2013. We are therefore advancing our plans to bring back some of our mothballed capacity. However, in spite of these plans, and the restarts announced by some of our competitors, the lag in bringing back this capacity suggests to me improving OSB demand will continue to outstrip supply for at least the next three quarters.”

“In Europe, our panel business delivered another strong result in spite of the challenging macroeconomic environment. Panel markets remain surprisingly stable and we continue to benefit from an ongoing currency advantage due to a weaker Pound Sterling. Both our customer order files and panel pricing trends indicate a positive start to the year.”