2018 was good to steel producer Nucor Corp — and it doesn’t look like its white hot momentum will melt its steel beams anytime soon.
Yesterday, it revealed plans to create close to 400 new, full-time jobs to run its latest investment: a new $1.35B steel mill.
Nucor’s stock hopped 2.4% following news of the Midwestern facility expected to produce 1.2m tons of steel plate products a year once operational in 2022.
For Nucor, its 2018 success was norm-core
The 78-year-old steel giant has maintained profitable growth for a majority of its history — it even poured $8B into its business during the 2008 steel downturn.
But, 2018 was a banner year: The company estimated a record-breaking 22% increase in its yearly earnings per share, and returned $1.3B to its shareholders after increasing its 2018 dividend for the 46th year in a row.
A poster child of the federal tax reform
Nucor was a major beneficiary of the hotly debated $1.5T federal tax reform bill that reduced corporate tax rates from 35% to 21%.
Signed into law in December 2017, the reform aims to free up debt and incentivize corporate giants to raise wages and create jobs. Meanwhile, Nucor got to double-dip on regulations: new steel tariffs helped Nucor log its second-best earnings report ever in Q2.