Commercial Metals Company (NYSE:CMC) Q3 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Jun 22, 2017 • 11:00 am ET
Hello, and welcome everyone to today's Commercial Metals Company Third Fiscal Quarter of 2017 Earnings Call. Today's call is being recorded. After the Company's remarks, we will have a question-and-answer session and we'll have a few instructions at that time.
I would like to remind all participants that during the course of this conference call, the Company will make statements that provide information other than historical information, and will include expectations regarding key macroeconomic drivers that impact our business, our margins, the effects of ongoing trade actions, refinancing plans, the exit from our International Marketing and Distribution segment, the Company's future operations, the Company's planned new steel mill in Oklahoma and capital spending (Forward-Looking Cautionary Statements)
Some numbers discussed or presented will be non-GAAP financial measures and reconciliations for such numbers can be found in the Company's earnings release or on the Company's website. Unless stated otherwise, all references made to year or third quarter are references to the Company's fiscal year or third fiscal quarter respectively. And now, for opening remarks and introductions, I will turn the call over to the Chairman of the Board, and Chief Executive Officer of Commercial Metals Company, Mr. Joe Alvarado
Good morning, and welcome to everyone joining us to review the results of our third quarter 2017. Today I am joined by Barbara Smith, President and Chief Operating Officer, and Mary Lindsey, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. I will review highlights from the quarter and then Mary will cover the quarter financial information in more detail.
Afterwards, I will conclude our prepared remarks with some comments on our recently announced exit from the International Marketing and Distribution segment and a discussion of our outlook for our 2017 fourth quarter after which we will open the call to questions. As announced in our earnings release this morning, we reported net sales of $1.4 billion for our third quarter 2017 and we are particularly pleased to report that our net earnings were $39.3 million or $0.34 per diluted share.
This is our best third quarter since 2012. Also as noted in our press release on June 21, our Board of Directors declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $0.12 per share of common stock for stockholders of record on July 6, 2017 and the dividend will be paid on July 20, 2017. This cash dividend reflects CMC's 211th consecutive quarterly dividend. Now, I'll cover current trends and conditions in the markets in which we operate.
First and foremost, continued optimism of a growing US economy led to strong results in our third fiscal quarter of 2017. As of April 2017, non-residential construction starts have increased almost 15% in comparison to the prior year. Additionally, the Architectural Billings Index a leading indicator of construction activity has been above 50 [ph] for three consecutive months providing confidence that construction growth should continue.
While the demand for construction products particularly rebar is very strong, supply side factors in the US have negatively impacted margins resulting in low metal