February 21, 2019 / 11:07 AM / 3 months ago

Brazil's CSN reports profit surge helped by higher global steel prices

SAO PAULO, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Brazilian steelmaker Companhia Siderurgica Nacional reported a 2018 profit of 5.2 billion reais ($1.40 billion), some 46 times what it made a year earlier, despite selling just 3 percent more steel, as it rode a wave of higher international prices.

Brazil’s steelmakers have rallied amid a trade spat between the United States and China that has boosted steel prices.

Domestic rival Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais said last week it had more than doubled its profits in 2018.

CSN said it had also benefited in 2018 from new tax credits, the appreciation of some of its investments and a local currency that appreciated toward the end of the year, making its steel export prices more competitive.

$1 = 3.7253 reais Reporting by Marcelo Rochabrun; editing by Jason Neely

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