ArcelorMittal , the world's largest steelmaker and a company whose fortunes are seen as a gauge of global manufacturing’s health has forecast higher profits for 2014.
Reuters reports that the company said that global steel consumption should increase by between 3.5 and 4 percent in 2014 from about 3.5 percent in 2013.
It expected consumption growth to slow in Brazil and China but also expected a growth of 1.5 - 2.5 percent in the European Union.
In a statement, Chief Executive Lakshmi Mittal said ArcelorMittal is cautiously optimistic about its 2014 prospects.
Meanwhile, Reuters reports that ArcelorMittal has expressed a wish to buy part or all of Italian steelmaker Ilva.
Il Sole 24 Ore reported that Ilva which runs Europe's biggest steel plant in the southern Italian city of Taranto is controlled by the Riva family. It manufacturers flat steel products used by carmakers, electrical appliance manufacturers and shipbuilders.
The company has been involved in an environmental scandal and the Italian government put Ilva under special administration last year.