ArcelorMittal's Flat Carbon Europe segment for the third quarter of 2012 recorded an operating loss of €303 million which includes restructuring costs but excludes interest and tax costs. The total operating loss now for the first nine months of 2012 stood at €643 million reflecting the continued difficult operating environment in Europe where further weakening of demand has combined with a seasonal slowdown.
Compared to Q2 of 2012, the segment's crude steel production fell 5.9 percent to 6.7 million tons (mt) in Q3 of 2012. Steel shipments for Q3 2012 fell to 5.8 mt, a decrease of 13.8 percent as compared to 6.8 mt for Q2 of 2012 and a decrease of 8.6 percent as compared to 6.4 mt for Q3 of 2011.
Sales stood at €4.9 billion for Q3 of 2012, a decrease of 12.5 percent as compared to €5,6 billion for Q2 of 2012. Sales decreased primarily due to lower steel shipment volumes and lower average steel selling prices.
Europe has seen declining GDP since the 3rd quarter of 2011 due to continuing decline in investment and consumption, as austerity and record unemployment weigh on demand. No sustained pick-up in Europe is expected before 2014 and the eurozone as a whole is likely to at best stagnate in 2013. PMI remains below 50 for a fifteenth month indicating manufacturing contraction. Apparent steel demand in the European Union in the first three quarters of 2012 is estimated to have declined around 9.5 percent year on year and we expect it to decline by close to 8 percent for the year as a whole. EU demand is now at least 28 percent below 2007 levels.
Source: Steel Insights
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