Steelmakers' losses decline substantially during quarter

Major US steelmakers are still losing money - but not as much. First-quarter losses by the seven largest steelmakers are reported to be $599 million, according to United Press International. However, this figure compares favorably to the last quarter of 1982. At that time, several companies were reportedly close to bankruptcy and losses hit the $2.2 billion mark.

Industry analysts predict continued losses for 1983, but they say steelmakers are likely to trim their losses each quarter and should be in the black by 1984.

For the first quarter, Bethlehem Steel Corporation, the nation's second-largest steelmaker, posted the industry's biggest loss - $175.2 million. But that was a decided upturn from fourth-quarter red ink of $1.15 billion, the biggest quarterly loss in US corporate history.

The No. 1 steelmaker in the United States, US Steel Corporation, said it lost

No. 3 Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation, a division of Dallas-based LTV Corporation, posted a first-quarter operating loss of $87.3 million.

Republic Steel lost $34.8 million, Armco $128.4 million, and Inland Steel almost $20 million.

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