ArcelorMittal reported a sharp drop in its first-quarter net profit. Its earnings fell to $11 million compared with $1.069 billion for the same period a year ago.
In the fourth quarter of 2011, the company posted a $1 billion loss.
Lakshmi Mittal, ArcelorMittal's chairman and CEO, said demand in North American continued to grow though Europe remains the biggest challenge. "During the first quarter we announced the extended idling of a number of facilities in line with our strategy of meeting demand from our more competitive sites," he said.
Mittal said ArcelorMittal had made good progress in divesting itself of noncore assets, and would take further steps along these lines in the rest of 2012 as part of a strategy to reduce net debt. (With AP inputs)