(Adds detail from analyst note, background; updates shares)
June 15 (Reuters) - U.S. steel-maker Nucor Corp said on Thursday it expects second-quarter earnings per share to decrease from the preceding quarter, partly due to weak demand in its steel mills business.
Nucor’s shares fell nearly 3 percent to $57.41 in morning trading after the company said it expects earnings of $1.00 to $1.05 per share for the second quarter ending July 1.
Wall Street analysts on average were expecting second-quarter earnings of $1.22 per share, analysts at Cowen & Co said in a client note.
The company reported a profit of $1.11 per share in the first quarter ended April 1.
“Market conditions for hot-rolled sheet products have been more challenging than we expected earlier in the quarter when we provided our qualitative guidance due to aggressive competition,” Nucor said in a statement.
Imports continued to hurt the U.S. steel industry, the company added.
China is the world’s largest steel producer and makes far more steel than it consumes, selling the excess output overseas, often undercutting domestic producers.
Last week, U.S. steel executives said a Trump administration national security review of their industry could provide relief from imports that dozens of U.S. Commerce Department anti-dumping cases have only partly offered.
Steel stocks have received a boost from Donald Trump’s election as president, with optimism that his administration will promote the domestic industry.
The S&P 1500 steel sector index had climbed 9.8 percent since Trump’s election, while Nucor’s shares had risen 15 percent. (Reporting by Arunima Banerjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar)