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Arcelor posts 1Q net loss of $416M but projects improved demand

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By KEVIN NEVERS

ArcelorMittal is reporting a net loss in the first quarter of 2016 of $416 million or 23 cents per share, compared to a net loss in the fourth quarter of $6.686 billion or $3.72 and a net loss in the year-ago period of $711 million or 40 cents.

The good news: the company is projecting an increase in both global and domestic steel consumption in 2016.

“Our results for the first quarter reflect the very tough operating conditions in the second half of 2015,” ArcelorMittal Chair and CEO Lakshmi Mittal said in a statement released today. “Since that time we have seen a recovery in spreads in our core markets to more sustainable levels, which is expected to result in improved results in the coming quarters. This is a welcome development, although given the levels of excess capacity in China the market remains fragile and we must continue to be vigilant and active against the threat of unfair trade.”

Outlook

“Based on the current economic outlook, ArcelorMittal expects global apparent steel consumption (ASC) to grow slightly in 2016 as compared to 2015,” the company said.

In the U.S. “continued growth in underlying steel demand the expected absence of a further destock in 2016 is expected to lead to ASC growth of 3 percent to 4 percent,” ArcelorMittal said.

“In China, our view of demand has marginally improved, but while we still expect real demand to decline due to weakness in the real estate sector, ASC is expected to stabilize at around 2015 levels support by an end to destocking (4.3 percent decline in 2015),” the company also said.

“While there remain risks to the global demand picture, given ArcelorMittal’s specific geographical and end-market exposures, the company expects its steel shipments to remain stable in 2016 as compared to 2015,” ArcelorMittal added.

Meanwhile, the company expects its cash requirements in 2016 to total $4.5 billion, “a greater than $1 billion reduction as compared to 2015.” ArcelorMittal is attributing that reduction to lower capital investment spending ($2.4 billion in 2016, compared to $2.7 billion in 2015); to lower interest expenses ($1.1 billion in 2016, compared to $1.3 billion in 2015); to no dividend in respect of the 2015 financial year; and to lower cash taxes.

1Q Numbers

* Sales of $13.3 billion ($13.9 billion in 4Q, $17.1 billion in year-ago).

* EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation) of $927 million ($1.1 billion in 4Q, $1.3 billion in year-ago).

* Operating income of $275 million (operating loss of $5.3 billion in 4Q, operating income of $571 million in year-ago).

* Shipments of 21.5 million metric tons (19.7 million in 4Q, 21.6 million in year-ago).

* Crude steel production of 23.2 million metric tons (21.6 million in 4Q, 23.7 million in year-ago).

1Q NAFTA, Including U.S. Flat, Long, and Tubular

* Sales of $3.8 billion ($3.6 billion in 4Q, $4.7 billion in year-ago).

* EBITDA of $339 million ($273 million in 4Q, $53 million in year-ago).

* Operating income of $205 million (operating loss of $741 million in 4Q, operating loss of $103 million in the year-ago).

* Steel shipments of 5.4 million metric tons (4.5 million in 4Q, 5.4 million in year-ago).

* Crude steel production of 5.6 million metric tons (5.1 million in 4Q, 5.9 million in year-ago).

* Average steel selling price of $635 per ton ($706 in 4Q, $796 in year-ago).

 

Posted 5/9/2016

 

 
 
 
 

 

 

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