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CARBO Ceramics' CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Net income for the second quarter of 2012 increased 7%, or $2 million, compared to the second quarter of 2011. Our average selling price declined 4% sequentially and about a quarter of that was due to the selling price decline was due to field trials.

Now turning to the outlook. As we noted previously, 2012 will have its share of challenges due to the shift in activity away from natural gas basins towards the liquids-rich basins in North America. We expect to see a very volatile, competitive environment in the second half of 2012 due to three main reasons: the continued oversupplied proppant market, low natural gas price, volatile NGL and oil prices and a continuation of higher distribution costs.

These three factors will lead to increased pressure on proppant pricing, proppant volumes and margins for the rest of the year. Regarding pricing we will continue to execute field trials in the third quarter of 2012 and although the price concession is limited it will affect our average selling price.

In addition, we will continue to manage the price volume relationship to efficiently utilize our plants and positively affect our financial results. The Canadian activity typically benefits volumes in the third quarter; however, activity coming out of spring breakup has been very slow. We are working to manage distribution cost in today’s fluctuating environment. We are deploying capital and long-term investments which will help us deliver products more efficiently to our clients.

Now looking at some project updates. The construction of our Marshfield resin-coated plant has been deferred at this time. We continue to monitor market conditions and will modify the project timeline accordingly. Work on the Millen, Georgia ceramic manufacturing plant project continues and we estimate the plant could commence production before the end of 2013. Resin-coating production in New Iberia will likely be limited through the third quarter of 2012 as we build a sufficient inventory of CARBO Northern White sand.

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