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Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation
Creve Coeur, Missouri, and Chicago, Ilinois, USA, 18 December 2008 -- /PRNewswire/ -- Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation (NASDAQ:SSCC) announced today that it expects its fourth quarter earnings, excluding unusual items, will be significantly lower compared with third quarter 2008 results.

North American packaging demand has deteriorated rapidly in the past several weeks and containerboard and pulp export markets have weakened even more dramatically. The company has been required to take significant market-related mill downtime to balance its supply with available demand. Smurfit-Stone presently expects to reduce containerboard and kraft paper production by up to 255,000 tons and softwood pulp production by up to 35,000 tons in the fourth quarter. These reductions are in addition to the previously announced permanent closures of the company's corrugated medium machine in Snowflake, Arizona, USA, and its hardwood pulp mill in Portage du Fort, Quebec, Canada, in October.

Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation is one of the industry's leading integrated containerboard and corrugated packaging producers and is one of the world's largest paper recyclers. The company is a member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, and the Chicago Climate Exchange. Smurfit-Stone generated revenue of UDS 7.4 billion in 2007, has led the industry in safety every year since 2001, and conducts its business in compliance with the environmental, health, and safety principles of the American Forest & Paper Association.

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