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Announcement:

Moody's: Hyundai Steel's 2017 results in line with its Baa2 rating

 The document has been translated in other languages

29 Jan 2018

Hong Kong, January 29, 2018 -- Moody's Investors Service says that Hyundai Steel Company's financial results for 2017 were broadly in line with its Baa2 issuer rating and stable rating outlook.

"Despite weaker operating income, a decrease in debt led to an improvement in Hyundai Steel's financial leverage in 2017," says Wan Hee Yoo, a Moody's Vice President and Senior Credit Officer.

According to the company's announcement on 26 January 2018, Hyundai Steel's consolidated operating income fell 5% to KRW1.37 trillion in 2017 from KRW1.45 trillion in 2016. However, its adjusted EBITDA is estimated to be broadly flat during this period given higher depreciation charges.

Hyundai Steel's softer performance in 2017 was caused by cost pressures and weaker earnings in its overseas steel centers, in turn the result of sluggish auto shipments by its affiliate automakers.

On the other hand, Hyundai Steel's consolidated reported debt fell to about KRW11.5 trillion at the end of 2017 from KRW12.1 trillion at the end of 2016. The debt reduction was mainly driven by moderate capital spending relative to its operating cash flow.

As a result, Moody's estimates that Hyundai Steel's adjusted debt/EBITDA improved to about 4.0x in 2017 from 4.2x in 2016.

Moody's expects Hyundai Steel's operating income to increase moderately in 2018, because of a recovery in the sales performance of its affiliate automakers and against the backdrop of continued favorable fundamentals in the steel market.

In addition, Moody's expects that Hyundai Steel's consolidated reported debt will fall further to about KRW11.0 trillion by the end of 2018, because its manageable levels of capital spending and dividend payments should allow it to generate positive free cash flow.

These factors will result in Hyundai Steel's adjusted debt/EBITDA improving to about 3.7x-3.8x in 2018 from 4.0x in 2017. This level of financial leverage is consistent with a Baa2 rating category and provides it with some buffer against a possible softening in steel margins, or an increase in investments.

The Baa2 rating continues to factor in two notches of parental uplift, owing to Moody's expectation that Hyundai Steel will receive support from Hyundai Motor group, in times of need.

The principal methodology used in this rating was Steel Industry published in September 2017. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

Hyundai Steel Company is the second-largest steel producer in Korea by sales volume, with a dominant market position in the long-steel segment. The company is the key supplier of steel products for Hyundai Motor Company (Baa1 stable) and Kia Motors Corporation (Baa1 stable).

This publication does not announce a credit rating action. For any credit ratings referenced in this publication, please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for the most updated credit rating action information and rating history.

Wan Hee Yoo
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

Gary Lau
MD - Corporate Finance
Corporate Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

No Related Data.
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