Why the BlueScope Steel share price is sinking today

The BlueScope Steel Limited (ASX: BSL) share price is down 5% to $11.56 today despite the US and Australia based steel manufacturer releasing no specific news to the market.

The group is forecasting H1 FY 2019 underlying earnings before interest and tax to come in around 10% higher than the $745 million delivered for the six-month period ending December 31 2018.

As a result of its recent success BlueScope recently announced plans to buy back up to $250 million worth of shares as part of its FY 2019 “capital management program” that includes maintaining $200 million to $400 million of net cash on its balance sheet.

Management estimated it has already returned nearly $850 million to shareholders via dividends and buybacks since the 2017 financial year.

Management has flagged that demand in the US and Australia for its steel and other building products remains robust, with it also having growing building products in China, Vietnam and India. The share price has now lost around one third of its value since August 2018 as investors worry about geopolitical risks, in particular the tariff war between the US and China.

Motley Fool contributor Tom Richardson has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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