SSAB today presented its results for the first half of 2006. Profit after financial items amounted to SEK 3,334 (3,540) million – the second highest half-year profit ever. During the second quarter, profit after financial items amounted to SEK 1,776 (1,748) million. - It is a strong result, with a higher inflow of orders and more sales than last year. This combined with sound control over working capital have resulted in cash flow developing very positively during the first half of the year, says CEO Olof Faxander in a comment on the report. - The work on further improving the product mix is continuing. Deliveries of extra and ultra high-strength sheet increased by 36% compared with the second quarter of last year. Deliveries of quenched steels increased by 6% compared with the same period last year, despite the fact that we are restricted by available production capacity. Core niche products now account for 38 (34)% of total deliveries from the steel operations, continues Olof Faxander. - We see continued favourable opportunities for growth within the customer segments to which we supply our core niche products and, by the autumn, SSAB will have 10% more quenched steel capacity. On our markets, the economy remains strong as far as infrastructure-related industry and capital expenditures are concerned, and thus we are confident as regards the future, concludes Olof Faxander.