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Luxembourg-based steel giant ArcelorMittal (NYSE: MT) posted a Q4 net loss of US$3.99bn, compared to a net loss of US$1bn in the same period a year ago, the company said in its quarterly results report.
Full-year net loss reached US$3.73bn, compared to US$2.26bn in net income in 2011.
Sales dropped 14% to US$19.3bn in the quarter, compared with US$24.5bn in 4Q11. Full-year sales also decreased 10.4% to US$84.2bn.
The company posted an operating loss of US$4.9bn in the period compared to an operating profit of US$47mn in 4Q11, while Ebitda decreased 22.8% to US$1.32bn in 4Q12 from US$1.71bn in the year ago period.
Total steel shipments in Q4 were 20Mt, flat from 20.6Mt in the fourth quarter of 2011.
Crude steel production was down 4.14% to 20.8Mt in 4Q12, and own iron ore production decreased 7.28% year-over-year to 14Mt from 15.1Mt in 4Q11.
The company expects the challenges seen last year to continue in 2013, "largely due to the fragility of the European economy." However, profitability is expected to improve thanks to measures implemented, including concentrating operational footprint on more competitive assets and reducing net debt, chairman and CEO Lakshmi Mittal said.
ArcelorMittal expects steel shipments to increase by approximately 2-3% this year compared to 2012. Iron ore shipments for 2013 are estimated to increase by approximately 20% compared to 2012.
In the Americas, ArcelorMittal - the world's largest steelmaker - has operations in Brazil, Argentina, Mexico and Trinidad & Tobago.
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