February 21, 2019 / 11:47 AM / 7 months ago

UPDATE 1-Brazil steelmakers CSN, Gerdau report surge in 2018 profits

(Adds Gerdau)

SAO PAULO, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Brazilian steelmakers Companhia Siderurgica Nacional and Gerdau reported significant 2018 profits, riding a wave of high international prices, despite modest changes to their steel output when measured in tons of metal sold.

CSN, as the company is known, reported late on Wednesday a 2018 profit of 5.2 billion reais ($1.4 billion) that was some 46 times what it made a year earlier.

Gerdau on Thursday reported a 2018 profit of 2.3 billion reais, compared to a loss of 340 million reais in 2017.

It was its best results in 10 years, the company said in a securities filing.

CSN increased its steel output by 3 percent while Gerdau’s fell by 5 percent.

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.

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

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