Steelmaker SSAB sees tentative demand recovery after Q2 loss

Swedish steelmaker SSAB said on Tuesday it expected market demand to pick up "somewhat" in the coming months after the deep slump due to the novel coronavirus pandemic pushed the company to report a loss for the second quarter.

STOCKHOLM, July 21 (Reuters) - Swedish steelmaker SSAB SSABa.ST said on Tuesday it expected market demand to pick up "somewhat" in the coming months after the deep slump due to the novel coronavirus pandemic pushed the company to report a loss for the second quarter.

The company reported an operating loss for the second quarter of 251 million Swedish crowns ($28 million), from a profit of 1.32 billion crowns a year earlier. However, the loss was lower than the 400 million seen by analysts according to Refinitiv estimates.

"Third quarter demand for steel is expected to be negatively affected by industrial deceleration due to the effects of Covid-19," SSAB said in a statement.

"In Europe in particular, but also to some extent also in North America, this effect is expected to be intensified by normal seasonal slowdown. Underlying demand is expected to improve somewhat toward the end of the third quarter."

($1 = 8.9655 Swedish crowns)

(Reporting by Niklas Pollard, Editing by Supantha Mukherjee)

((Niklas.Pollard@thomsonreuters.com;))

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