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Strong lumber prices boost Resolute second quarter results at revenues nearly double

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MONTREAL — Resolute Forest Products Inc. is reporting a very strong second quarter as net income soared on a near doubling of revenues as prices reached record highs.

The Montreal-based pulp, paper and lumber producer says its profit attributable to shareholders was US$268 million or US$3.34 per diluted share, up from US$6 million or seven cents per share a year earlier.

Resolute, which reports in U.S. dollars, says its adjusted profit was US$300 million or US$3.74 per share, up from a loss of US$22 million or 25 cents in the second quarter of 2020.

Revenues for the three months ended June 30 were US$1.1 billion, up from US$612 million.

The company was expected to report US$3.39 per share in adjusted profits on US$1.05 billion of revenues, according to financial data firm Refinitiv.

Wood products generated US$405 million in net income in the quarter, up from US$15 million in the prior year's quarter. Market pulp profits rose to US$30 million from US$10 million, while the paper and tissue segments each lost US$7 million, compared with losses of US$12 million and US$2 million, respectively, a year earlier.

"With benchmark prices reaching record highs in May and our best-ever quarterly shipments, we used the exceptional cash generation from our wood products segment to make lasting changes to our business and increase value for our shareholders," stated CEO Remi Lalonde.

He said the company reduced debt by US$180 million, declared a US$79-million special dividend, and announced a further US$50 million in projects to strengthen its wood products business.

"Although benchmark lumber prices have come down significantly in recent weeks and remain volatile, we are confident in the underlying business fundamentals. We believe in our wood products business for the long-term, with the segment representing a key pillar of our ongoing transformation."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 29, 2021.

Companies in this story: (TSX:RFP)

The Canadian Press

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version contained an incorrect figure for Q2 2020 profit.