ArcelorMittal reports first quarter loss

ArcelorMittal reports first quarter loss on weaker sales, higher taxes

Associated Press

AMSTERDAM (AP) -- ArcelorMittal SA, the global steel-making giant, has reported a loss for the first quarter, even as restructuring efforts are beginning to pay off and the steel market is stabilizing after a sharp decline in mid-2012.

The net loss was $345 million euros (265 million euros), compared to a profit of $92 million in the first quarter of 2012. The worse results were due to weaker operations and because the Luxembourg-based company had a tax windfall this time last year.

Sales fell 13 percent to $19.8 billion, and operating profit fell 50 percent to $404 million.

The company's Indian born chief executive Lakshmi Mittal said Friday economic conditions are still difficult, but a shift to producing more steel in the company's most competitive plants and geographies is paying off.

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