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Resolute reports record preliminary Q3 2018 results  

Photo: Resolute
Photo: Resolute
Published by
Simon Matthis - 05 Nov 2018

Resolute Forest Products recently net income for the quarter ended September 30, 2018, of $117 million, or $1.25 per diluted share, compared to $24 million, or $0.26 per share, in the same period in 2017. Sales were $974 million in the quarter, an increase of $89 million from the year-ago period. Excluding special items, the company reported net income of $96 million, or $1.03 per share, compared to $31 million, or $0.34 per share, in the third quarter of 2017.

"Our best pulp quarter combined with continued positive market dynamics for paper helped offset the effects of a weaker lumber market, leading to another quarter of record results and a further reduction in leverage. Our continued focus on improving operational performance also resulted in a notable increase in the profitability of our specialty papers business," said Yves Laflamme, president and chief executive officer.

"We recently entered into an agreement to sell the Catawba paper and pulp mill for $300 million, and today, we will complete the previously announced sale of the Fairmont recycled pulp mill for proceeds of $62 million, subject to final working capital adjustments. These transactions allow us to maximize the value of these assets and redeploy capital to increase shareholder value. We remain focused on growing our core businesses in line with our transformation strategy, reducing debt and returning capital to our shareholders."

The company reported operating income of $135 million in the quarter, compared to $121 million in the second quarter of 2018. Despite weaker lumber markets, overall results increased by $14 million, supported by higher pricing and improved productivity in our pulp and paper operations. Higher manufacturing expense, mostly associated with rising fiber costs, were mitigated by the favorable impact of the weaker Canadian dollar and improved freight costs.