ArcelorMittal profits rise 1.5 percent to $192 billion

Steelmaker ArcelorMittal has offices at Indiana Harbor. The steelmaker made $1.92 billion in the third quarter.

ArcelorMittal posted another profitable quarter this year, doubling earnings to $1.21 billion in the third quarter, up from $680 million in the third quarter of 2016.

The Luxembourg-based steelmaker increased its EBITDA, or Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization, by 1.5 percent to $1.92 billion in the third quarter that ran from July to September because of strong demand and favorable market conditions. Operating income was up 2.5 percent year-over-year.

“Favorable market conditions have supported another solid quarterly performance, with EBITDA for the first nine months considerably improved year-on-year," ArcelorMittal Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Lakshmi N. Mittal said in a statement. "Operating conditions continue to improve, with key indicators including the ArcelorMittal weighted PMI implying a positive outlook for 2018."

Sales shot up 21 percent to $17.6 billion in the third quarter, up from $14.5 billion in the third quarter of 2016.

"While pleased with the progress that we are making, we operate in a competitive global environment which is characterized by overcapacity and high levels of imports," Mittal said. "The implementation of our strategic plan Action 2020 remains a clear priority and we are making good progress in this regard.”

Shipments rose 6.8 percent year over year to 21.7 million tons in the third quarter. ArcelorMittal's shipments for the first nine months of the year are up 0.6 percent to 64.2 million tons.

In North America, steel shipments rose 4.3 percent year-over-year in the third quarter, the company reported.

The steelmaker, one of Northwest Indiana's largest employers, said demand remains positive and it expects to invest $2 billion in working capital this year, up from a previous estimate of $1.5 billion.

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Business reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.