, the world's biggest steelmaker, swung to a profit of $1.07 billion in the fourth quarter and said it's increasing capital expenditures as demand improves.
ArcelorMittal reported a year-earlier loss of $2.63 billion.
Sales in the fourth quarter fell to $18.64 billion from $22.09 billion a year earlier. Shipments rose 17%.
"In a very difficult environment, ArcelorMittal has succeeded in reducing its cost base substantially and significantly strengthening the balance sheet," the company said in a statement Wednesday. "We therefore start the year in a good position to benefit from the progressive, albeit slow, recovery that is underway. Although 2010 will continue to be challenging, we are now increasing capital expenditure to take advantage of selected growth opportunities as demand improves."
ArcelorMittal said it expects first-quarter earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $1.8 billion to $2.2 billion.
-- Reported by Joseph Woelfel in New York.
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