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Tata Steel Posts Profit

Tata Steel Ltd., the world’s sixth-biggest steel producer by capacity, posted a 39% fall in the three months to Dec. 31 consolidated net profit, but its shares rose as the market had expected a loss.

Earnings at Tata Steel, which controls European steelmaker Corus, took a hit because of inventory write-downs at some units, a foreign exchange loss and a tax write-back.

Net profit in the three months to Dec. 31 slid to 8.14 billion rupees ($161.6 million) from 13.25 billion rupees a year earlier, the Mumbai-based company said. Net sales rose 4% to 331.91 billion rupees from 318.98 billion rupees.

Motilal Oswal Securities Ltd., a Mumbai-based brokerage, had forecast a quarterly net loss of 4.87 billion rupees, while Prabhudas Lilladher estimated a net loss of 3.34 billion rupees.

Shares of Tata Steel gained on the news, closing 5.6% higher at 172.35 rupees on the Bombay Stock Exchange, compared with a 0.7% decline in the benchmark Sensex index.

Tata Steel said also that a change in accounting norms relating to pension plans for Corus increased profit for the December quarter by 42.56 billion rupees.

The financial results also included those of Tata Steel’s units in Thailand and Singapore.

[ Continue reading the original article on The Wall Street Journal ]

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