ArcelorMittal said that apparent and real demand for steel remains positive in the second quarter in the United States and Europe but would be slower in the second half of 2010.
Mr LN Mittal chairman & CEO of ArcelorMittal at American Metal Market's 25th Steel Success Strategies conference said that he saw demand slowing in the second half for seasonal reasons.
He told “European customers are taking a wait and see approach. At the same time, inventory levels are still low. We are also seeing US customers taking a wait and see approach after restocking, but inventory levels are still low there also.”
Mr Mittal added that “But once you take out the seasonality factor, things will start to improve.”
Asked about customer sectors, Mr Mittal said “Housing is clearly still weak. Autos are still strong. The capital goods market is starting to improve and engineering is starting to improve.”
Mittal also said he did not see steel demand returning to pre crisis levels until 2012.