Claymont Steel Holdings ( PLTE) said its third-quarter net earnings will only be 5 cents to 10 cents a share because of lower-than-expected production and shipments.

The company had to deal with the restart of its reheat furnace in August following an upgrade during the recent annual Plate Mill outage, which led to the soft output and shipments. Third-quarter EBITDA will be cut by approximately $7.5 million and fourth-quarter EBITDA will be reduced by roughly $2.3 million.

In September, the company's operational performance improved and is expected to return to a level in line with expectations in October.

Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were looking for a profit of 43 cents, before any items.

"While I'm disappointed in the timing of the recovery of our reheat furnace, which resulted in a 20% reduction in projected shipments in August and September, our performance in the latter part of September is very encouraging and validates the investments we made in July. Our order book and spreads in the third quarter were very solid, and we are seeing the expected strengthening as we enter the fourth quarter," said Jeff Bradley, Claymont's chairman and CEO, in a press release.

The company plans to announce its third-quarter earnings in early November.

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