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      Westlake Chemical Corporation Reports First Quarter 2019 Results

      Westlake Chemical Corporation Reports First Quarter 2019 Results

      HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 2, 2019-- Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE: WLK) (the "Company" or "Westlake") today reported net income attributable to Westlake for the three months ended March?31,?2019 of $72?million, or $0.55 per diluted share, on net sales of $2,025 million. Net income decreased by $215 million compared to first quarter 2018 net income of $287 million, or $2.20 per diluted share. Income from operations for the first quarter of 2019 of $134 million decreased $267 million from income from operations of $401 million for the first quarter of 2018. The decrease was primarily due to lower margins which resulted from lower sales prices for our major products, higher ethane feedstock costs, and higher costs associated with restructuring, transaction and integration-related activity. Sales prices for many of our major products fell in the fourth quarter of 2018 following the 40% decline in global crude oil prices and weaker demand in China driven largely by international trade tensions between the United States and China. Following the decline, the lower sales prices for our major products carried through the first quarter of 2019 as increased olefins industry capacity, high global chlor-alkali operating rates and the continuing uncertainties concerning international trade kept prices from rising. Restructuring, acquisition and integration-related costs in the first quarter of 2019 were $22 million, or $0.16 per diluted share.

      First quarter 2019 net income of $72 million, or $0.55 per diluted share, on net sales of $2,025 million, decreased by $51 million from fourth quarter 2018 net income of $123 million, or $0.95 per diluted share, on sales of $1,995 million. Income from operations for the first quarter of 2019 of $134 million decreased by $73 million from fourth quarter 2018 income from operations of $207 million. The decrease was primarily due to lower sales prices for all of our major products and higher costs associated with restructuring, acquisition and integration-related activities, partially offset by lower feedstock and fuel costs, and higher sales volumes for styrene and PVC resin.

      “In the first quarter, we continued to see good demand for our major chemical products in both the domestic and export markets and believe we are well positioned on the lower end of the global cost curves in both our Olefins and Vinyls businesses,” said Albert Chao, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Although we experienced a difficult pricing environment in the first quarter following the sharp decline in global crude oil prices in late 2018 and weaker Chinese demand, we are cautiously optimistic that higher crude oil prices and a resolution to trade tensions between the U.S. and China will lead to improved industry fundamentals in the second half of 2019.”

      Net cash provided by operating activities was $147 million and capital expenditures were $203?million for the first quarter of 2019. As of March?31,?2019, cash and cash equivalents were $445 million and long-term debt was $2,669?million.

      EBITDA (earnings before interest expense, income taxes, depreciation and amortization) of $314 million for the first quarter of 2019 decreased by $265 million compared to first quarter 2018 EBITDA of $579 million. First quarter 2019 EBITDA decreased by $60 million compared to fourth quarter 2018 EBITDA of $374 million. A reconciliation of EBITDA to net income, income from operations and net cash provided by operating activities can be found in the financial schedules at the end of this press release.

      OLEFINS SEGMENT

      First quarter 2019 income from operations for the Olefins segment of $37 million decreased by $126 million from first quarter 2018 income from operations of $163 million. This decrease in income from operations was primarily due to lower margins resulting from lower sales prices for our major products following the sharp drop in global crude oil prices in the fourth quarter of 2018 and increased olefins production capacity as well as higher ethane feedstock costs, partially offset by higher polyethylene and styrene sales volumes.

      Olefins income from operations of $37 million for the first quarter of 2019 decreased by $53 million from fourth quarter 2018 income from operations of $90 million. The decrease in income from operations was primarily due to lower sales prices for our major products and higher costs associated with increased planned turnaround activity partially offset by lower ethane feedstock costs.

      VINYLS SEGMENT

      First quarter 2019 income from operations for the Vinyls segment of $101 million decreased $165 million from first quarter 2018 income from operations of $266 million. This decrease in income from operations was primarily due to lower sales prices for our major products, higher ethane feedstock costs and higher costs associated with restructuring, acquisition and integration-related activities, partially offset by lower purchased ethylene costs.

      Vinyls income from operations for the first quarter of 2019 of $101 million decreased by $24 million from fourth quarter 2018 income from operations of $125 million. The decrease in income from operations was primarily due to lower sales prices for all of our major products and higher restructuring, acquisition and integration-related costs, partially offset by lower ethane feedstock and purchased ethylene costs and higher sales volumes for PVC resin.

      The statements in this release and the related teleconference relating to matters that are not historical facts, including statements regarding the demand for our products, industry fundamentals and our position on the global cost curves for the Olefins and Vinyls businesses, are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially, based on factors including, but not limited to: general economic and business conditions; the cyclical nature of the chemical industry; availability, cost and volatility of raw materials and utilities, including natural gas and natural gas liquids from shale production; the price of crude oil; uncertainties associated with the United States and worldwide economies, including those due to global economic and financial conditions; governmental regulatory actions, including environmental regulation and changes in trade policies; political unrest; industry production capacity and operating rates; the supply/demand balance for Westlake's products; competitive products and pricing pressures; access to capital markets; technological developments; the effect and results of litigation and settlements of litigation; operating interruptions; and other risk factors. For more detailed information about the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, please refer to Westlake's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December?31,?2018, which was filed with the SEC in February?2019.

      Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

      This release makes reference to certain "non-GAAP" financial measures, such as EBITDA, as defined in Regulation G of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. We report our financial results in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles ("U.S. GAAP"), but believe that certain non-GAAP financial measures, such as EBITDA, provide useful supplemental information to investors regarding the underlying business trends and performance of the company's ongoing operations and are useful for period-over-period comparisons of such operations. These non-GAAP financial measures should be considered as a supplement to, and not as a substitute for, or superior to, the financial measures prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. A reconciliation of EBITDA to net income, income from operations and net cash provided by operating activities can be found in the financial schedules at the end of this press release.

      Westlake Chemical Corporation

      Westlake Chemical Corporation is an international manufacturer and supplier of petrochemicals, polymers and building products with headquarters in Houston. The Company's range of products includes: ethylene, polyethylene, styrene, propylene, chlor-alkali and derivative products, PVC suspension and specialty resins, PVC compounds, and PVC building products including siding, pipe, fittings and specialty components, windows, fence, deck and film. For more information, visit the Company's web site at www.5chei.com.

      Westlake Chemical Corporation Conference Call Information:

      A conference call to discuss Westlake Chemical Corporation's first quarter 2019 results will be held Thursday, May?2,?2019 at 11:00 AM Eastern Time (10:00 AM Central Time). To access the conference call, dial (855) 760-8160 or (704) 288-0624 for international callers, approximately 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time and reference passcode 1248758.

      A replay of the conference call will be available beginning two hours after its conclusion until 11:59?p.m. Eastern Time on May?9,?2019. To hear a replay, dial (855) 859-2056 or (404) 537-3406 for international callers. The replay passcode is 1248758.

      The conference call will also be available via webcast at: https://edge.media-server.com/m6/p/9ii2oooo and the earnings release can be obtained via the company's web page at: http://www.5chei.com/investor-relations.

      ? ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS

      (Unaudited)

      ?
      Three Months Ended March 31,
      2019 ? ? ? 2018
      ?

      (In millions of dollars, except per
      share data)

      Net sales $ 2,025 $ 2,150
      Cost of sales 1,726 ? 1,608 ?
      Gross profit 299 542
      Selling, general and administrative expenses 116 108
      Amortization of intangibles 27 26
      Restructuring, transaction and integration-related costs 22 ? 7 ?
      Income from operations 134 401
      Interest expense (30 ) (37 )
      Other income, net 9 ? 22 ?
      Income before income taxes 113 386
      Provision for income taxes 31 ? 89 ?
      Net income 82 297
      Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests 10 ? 10 ?
      Net income attributable to Westlake Chemical Corporation $ 72 ? $ 287 ?
      Earnings per common share attributable to Westlake Chemical Corporation:
      Basic $ 0.56 $ 2.21
      Diluted $ 0.55 ? $ 2.20 ?
      ? ? ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS

      (Unaudited)

      ?
      March 31,
      2019
      December 31,
      2018
      ?
      (In millions of dollars)
      ASSETS
      Current assets
      Cash and cash equivalents $ 445 $ 753
      Accounts receivable, net 1,121 1,037
      Inventories 1,021 1,014
      Prepaid expenses and other current assets 40 38
      Total current assets 2,627 2,842
      Property, plant and equipment, net 6,720 6,595
      Other assets, net 2,757 2,165
      Total assets $ 12,104 $ 11,602
      ?
      LIABILITIES AND EQUITY
      Current liabilities (accounts and notes payable and accrued and other liabilities) $ 1,226 $ 1,183
      Long-term debt, net 2,669 2,668
      Other liabilities 2,024 1,675
      Total liabilities 5,919 5,526
      Total Westlake Chemical Corporation stockholders' equity 5,632 5,590
      Noncontrolling interests 553 486
      Total equity 6,185 6,076
      Total liabilities and equity $ 12,104 $ 11,602
      ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS

      (Unaudited)

      ?
      Three Months Ended March 31,
      2019 ? ? 2018
      ?
      (In millions of dollars)
      Cash flows from operating activities
      Net income $ 82 $ 297
      Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:
      Depreciation and amortization 171 156
      Deferred income taxes 15 16
      Net loss on disposition and others 36 5
      Other balance sheet changes (157 ) (249 )
      Net cash provided by operating activities 147 ? 225 ?
      Cash flows from investing activities
      Acquisition of business, net of cash acquired (236 )
      Additions to property, plant and equipment (203 ) (154 )
      Additions to investments in unconsolidated subsidiaries (42 ) (26 )
      Other, net 6 ? 2 ?
      Net cash used for investing activities (475 ) (178 )
      Cash flows from financing activities
      Dividends paid (33 ) (27 )
      Distributions to noncontrolling interests (8 ) (7 )
      Proceeds from notes payable 1 4
      Proceeds from issuance of Westlake Chemical Partners LP common units 63
      Redemption and repayment of notes payable (4 ) (706 )
      Other 2 ? 5 ?
      Net cash provided by (used for) financing activities 21 ? (731 )
      Effect of exchange rate changes on cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash (1 ) 4
      Net decrease in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash (308 ) (680 )
      Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash at beginning of period 775 ? 1,554 ?
      Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash at end of period $ 467 ? $ 874 ?
      ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      SEGMENT INFORMATION

      (Unaudited)

      ?
      Three Months Ended March 31,
      2019 ? ? 2018
      ?
      (In millions of dollars)
      Net external sales
      Olefins $ 459 $ 503
      Vinyls 1,566 ? 1,647 ?
      $ 2,025 ? $ 2,150 ?
      Income (loss) from operations
      Olefins $ 37 $ 163
      Vinyls 101 266
      Corporate and other (4 ) (28 )
      $ 134 ? $ 401 ?
      Depreciation and amortization
      Olefins $ 35 $ 34
      Vinyls 134 118
      Corporate and other 2 ? 4 ?
      $ 171 ? $ 156 ?
      Other income, net
      Olefins $ 2 $ 2
      Vinyls 4 12
      Corporate and other 3 ? 8 ?
      $ 9 ? $ 22 ?
      ? ? ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      RECONCILIATION OF EBITDA TO NET INCOME, INCOME FROM OPERATIONS AND

      NET CASH PROVIDED BY OPERATING ACTIVITIES

      (Unaudited)

      ?

      Three Months
      Ended December
      31,

      Three Months Ended March 31,
      2018 2019 ? ? 2018
      ?
      (In millions of dollars)
      Net cash provided by operating activities $ 254 $ 147 $ 225
      Changes in operating assets and liabilities and other (135 ) (50 ) 88
      Deferred income taxes 12 ? (15 ) (16 )
      Net income 131 ? 82 ? 297 ?
      Less:
      Other income (expense), net (1 ) 9 22
      Interest expense (30 ) (30 ) (37 )
      Provision for income taxes (45 ) (31 ) (89 )
      Income from operations 207 ? 134 ? 401 ?
      Add:
      Depreciation and amortization 168 171 156
      Other income (expense), net (1 ) 9 ? 22 ?
      EBITDA $ 374 ? $ 314 ? $ 579 ?
      ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

      WESTLAKE CHEMICAL CORPORATION

      ?

      SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION

      ?

      Product Sales Price and Volume Variance by Operating Segments

      ?

      First Quarter 2019 vs.
      First Quarter 2018

      First Quarter 2019 vs.
      Fourth Quarter 2018

      Average

      Sales Price

      ? ? Volume Average

      Sales Price

      ? ? Volume
      Olefins -23.2 % +14.5 % -10.6 % +3.6 %
      Vinyls -3.9 % -1.1 % -2.4 % +6.7 %
      Company -8.4 % +2.5 % -4.4 % +5.9 %
      ? ? ?

      Average Quarterly Industry Prices (1)

      ?
      Quarter Ended
      March 31,
      2018
      ? ? June 30,
      2018
      ? ? September 30,
      2018
      ? ? December 31,
      2018
      ? ? March 31,
      2019
      Ethane (cents/lb) 8.5 9.7 14.3 11.6 10.0
      Propane (cents/lb) 20.2 20.7 23.5 18.7 15.7
      Ethylene (cents/lb) (2) 23.6 14.8 17.3 20.2 17.0
      Polyethylene (cents/lb) (3) 73.7 73.7 70.0 68.0 60.0
      Styrene (cents/lb) (4) 98.3 93.0 90.3 84.3 78.8
      Caustic soda ($/short ton) (5) 748.3 795.0 781.7 748.3 716.7
      Chlorine ($/short ton) (6) 160.0 175.0 175.0 175.0 175.0
      PVC (cents/lb) (7) 67.2 67.5 67.5 67.5 68.8
      ________________
      (1) ? Industry pricing data was obtained through IHS Markit ("IHS"). We have not independently verified the data.
      (2) Represents average North American spot prices of ethylene over the period as reported by IHS.
      (3) Represents average North American net transaction prices of polyethylene low density GP-Film grade over the period as reported by IHS.
      (4) Represents average North American contract prices of styrene over the period as reported by IHS.
      (5) Represents average North American United States Gulf Coast undiscounted contract prices of caustic soda over the period as reported by IHS.
      (6) Represents average North American contract prices of chlorine over the period as reported by IHS. Effective January 1, 2019, IHS made a non-market average downward adjustment of $172.50 per short ton to chlorine prices. For comparability, we adjusted the prior period's chlorine price downward by $172.50 per short ton consistent with the IHS non-market adjustment.
      (7) Represents average North American contract prices of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) over the period as reported by IHS.

      Source: Westlake Chemical Corporation

      Contact—(713)?960-9111
      Investors—Steve Bender
      Media—L. Benjamin Ederington

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