ArcelorMittal posts USD 261 million net loss for Sep quarter

New Delhi, Nov 5: Global steel giant ArcelorMittal on Thursday posted a net loss of USD 261 million (around Rs 1,940 crore) for the quarter ended September 30, 2020.
The world’s largest steelmaker had clocked a net loss of USD 539 million in the same quarter a year ago, the company said in a statement.
The Luxembourg-headquartered integrated steel and mining company follows January-December fiscal year.
According to the statement, the net loss in June quarter was USD 559 million.
Sales in July-September were USD 13.3 billion as compared to USD 16.6 billion in the corresponding period of 2019, the company said.
However, as compared to USD 11 billion in April-June, the sales were 20.9 per cent higher in third quarter.
The company said the total steel shipments in third quarter were at 17.5 million tonne (MT), lower from 20.2 MT in the year-ago period. In June quarter, shipments were 14.8 MT .
Improved operating performance in the third quarter reflects a gradual recovery in steel end markets, in particular automotive , following the severe impact of COVID-19 lockdowns on economic activity in second quarter as well as stronger mining segment performance, it said.
“The third quarter marked an improved operating performance for the Group with steel markets recovering gradually from the very challenging second quarter after the ending of lockdowns. All steel segments saw improved demand with Brazil and ACIS showing particularly encouraging profitability improvement,” ArcelorMittal Chairman and CEO Lakshmi N Mittal said.
Mittal further said the recent rise in COVID-19 cases worldwide makes it prudent to remain cautious about the outlook and “we should be prepared for further volatility.”
However, “our success to date in protecting our people, assets, profitability and cash flow throughout the crisis puts the Group in a good position to take advantage of further economic recovery,” he said.
On the outlook for the sector, the company said the easing of lockdown has seen activity levels improving since second quarter, nevertheless, demand remains below normal and the pace and profile of recovery is uncertain.
The company said it has begun to restart hot idled capacity as market demand improves on a region by region basis.           Nevertheless, as concerns around the second wave of the pandemic persist, the company maintains its flexibility to quickly adapt production as conditions evolve.
ArcelorMittal said it continues to focus on cost reduction initiatives to protect profitability as it navigates the evolving demand backdrop.
“Moving forward, as economic activity recovers the company will respond by increasing production, leading to the return of some fixed cost. However, this will be in line with higher volumes, and so fixed costs per-tonne are not expected to increase,” it said. (PTI)