BY JOHN W. MILLER AND ALEX MACDONALD
ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steelmaker, is girding for a rough winter after reporting subpar earnings Thursday, and it warned that a vulnerable European economy will depress steel demand.
But the company said low inventory levels will help drive new orders when more consumers begin to buy cars and build homes.
ArcelorMittal said concerns over Europe, with the potential for a sovereign-debt and banking crisis, are significantly impacting customer-confidence levels and leading to a “wait and see” attitude over orders. “We expect shipments in the fourth quarter to decline marginally compared with the third quarter,” Chief Financial Officer Aditya Mittal said.