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Rock-Tenn's CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

In the face of the quarter's relatively weak market conditions, we continue to achieve strong cash generated from operations of $255 million. And as Steve will discuss, we executed several very favorable financings that significantly improved our overall financial structure. During the quarter, among other cash uses, we reduced net debt $62 million, contributed $40 million to our pension plans in excess of pension expense, and we paid dividends of $14 million. The proceeds from closed plant sales essentially offset cash restructuring costs, and we paid $19 million in redemption premiums and issuance costs to retire our 9.25% 2016 notes and the balance of $746 million on our acquisition-related term loan B.

Comparing Corrugated segment earnings in Q1 to -- in Q2 to Q1, lower pricing reduced earnings $10 million; volume including economic and major maintenance downtime reduced earnings $22 million; and the net impact of wood, fiber and energy increased earnings $8 million. We completed major maintenance outages at our Panama City, Florence and Jacksonville mills, which reduced containerboard output by about 52,000 tons. And we took approximately 120,000 tons of economic downtime, primarily at our Jacksonville recycled containerboard mill and at our La Tuque and West Point white top mills. We also permanently closed our Matane, Québec 176,000-ton-per-year recycled containerboard mill. It was a medium mill, and we took it down as required to balance our system capacity in the lighter capacity that we we're going to add to our Hodge and Hopewell mills through projects later this year. We expect it will take a very limited amount of white top economic downtime in the June quarter, no brown economic downtime, and it will draw down the containerboard inventories we built up in anticipation of the approximately 140,000 tons of major maintenance outage downtime that we expect to take in the June quarter. We also currently expect to run to capacity in the September quarter, and we see our primary challenge in it is meeting our overall system demand in our seasonally strongest period. Our overall corrugated converted product volume was up about 1% over the December quarter. Our strongest performers were our West Coast in Mexican operations and our recently acquired Corpak plants, and that acquisition is working out very well.

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