Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Steel Corp., the country’s largest producer of the metal by volume, reported a fourth- quarter loss that was wider than analysts estimated as European demand dropped.
The net loss narrowed to $226 million, or $1.57 a share, from $249 million, or $1.74, a year earlier, the Pittsburgh- based company said today in a statement. The loss excluding foreign-exchange effects and a environmental-remediation charge was $1.14 a share, missing the average projection for an 86-cent loss of 17 estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
Sales gained 12 percent to $4.82 billion from $4.3 billion, beating the $4.71 billion average of 12 analysts’ estimates in the survey.
The loss from the company’s European business unit widened to $89 million from $39 million a year earlier.
“U.S. Steel Europe results continue to reflect the difficult economic situation in the region,” Chief Executive Officer John Surma said in the statement.
U.S. Steel fell 0.8 percent to $28.50 at 7:41 a.m. before the open of regular New York trading. The shares increased 8.6 percent this year before today.
Serbian Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic said on Jan. 27 that his government would repurchase U.S. Steel’s plant in the country, which had operating losses in 2009 and 2010.
--Editors: Steven Frank, Simon Casey
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