Steel giant ArcelorMittal in lower quarterly loss

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BRUSSELS (AP) — The world's largest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal SA, is reporting a lower net loss for the first quarter and remains upbeat for the full year amid increasing demand from the United States and Europe.

The company on Friday reported a net loss of $205 million for the January through March period, down from $345 million a year earlier. Sales remained practically flat at $19.8 billion.

The Luxembourg-based firm says it anticipates lower steel demand from Russia, Ukraine and emerging markets such as China but overall steel shipments should still increase by 3 percent this year.

CEO Lakshmi Mittal says "the prospects for growth of our core markets in Europe and the U.S. are encouraging and overall we remain cautiously optimistic ... for the rest of 2014."