Steel Mills

ArcelorMittal Posts Profit of $52M in Q2

Written by Sandy Williams

ArcelorMittal posted a profit of $52 million in the second quarter, following a string of quarterly losses that included a $205 million loss in Q1 2014 and a $780 million loss in Q2 2013. Steel shipments increased by 2.5 percent y/y to 21.5 million tonnes (23.7 million net tons). Net debt decreased to $17.4 billion at the end of June 30, 2014.

Results for the NAFTA segment were disappointing. Crude steel production fell 1.7 percent to 6.2 million tonnes in the Q2 due to planned and unplanned outages. Steel shipments increased by 3.2 percent y/y to 5.8 million tonnes (6.4 million net tons). Average selling prices for flat products increased by 1 percent and long products by 4.7 percent.

A $70 million planned maintenance of the number 7 blast furnace at Indiana Harbor and a $30 million unplanned outage at the Cleveland plant, partly weather related, took their toll on shipments and revenue in the second quarter. Winter related costs resulted in higher energy costs and lower shipments in the first and second quarters. “The impact of higher energy costs and other costs was approximately $200 million in 1Q 2014 and approximately $150 million in 2Q 2014 due to inventory effect,” said ArcelorMittal in their results.

The Indiana Harbor furnace is currently in the ramp up phase and is expected to provide an additional 1000 tonnes of hot metal per day.

The AM/NS Calvert transition is going well with the hot mill running at 83% utilization in June. Initial slab shipments from ArcelorMittal Tubarao and ArcelorMittal Mexico were received in second quarter. ArcelorMittal expects production levels to be about 30 percent higher than in 2013 resulting in 800,000 to 900,000 tonnes more production than Calvert did in 2013. CalvertAM/NS has achieved approval on 143 of the 163 identified automotive qualification packages.

An anti-trust litigation was settled for $90 million during the second quarter, according to ArcelorMittal, to avoid further costs and mitigate further risk but the company strongly denies any wrongdoing.

The upgrades at ArcelorMittal Dofasco include a new heavy gauge galvanize line (#6 galvanize line) in Phase 1 that will have AHSS capability and a capacity of 660ktpy. The line #2 will be closed. Completion is expected in 2015. Phase 2 includes the conversion of the #4 galvanize line to a dual pot line and closure of the #1 galvanize line. The #4 line is expected to have a capacity of 160tpy of galvalume and 128ktpy of galvanize products. Completion of the #4 line is scheduled for 2016.

ArcelorMittal expects global steel consumption to increase by 3.0-3.5 percent in 2014 as compared to 2013. Steel consumption in the US is expected to increase by 5-6 percent. ArcelorMittal anticipates its steel shipments will increase by 3 percent in 2014 and marketable iron ore shipments by 15 percent.

“We still see the market being quite strong, said Louis Schorsch, CEO of ArcelorMittal Americas. “I think you saw the macro statistics from the US we’re seeing that in our market. The pricing differential versus the rest of the world is always a concern, but that’s been the case now for about a year. So, again, we’re optimistic that issues are behind us for the second half.”

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