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Japan's top steelmaker Nippon swings back into black

Published on Jan 30, 2014 4:14 PM

TOKYO (AFP) - Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. said Thursday it swung to a profit for nine months to December on the back of strong demand in line with the nation's economic recovery.

The world's second-biggest steelmaker said net profit was 192.8 billion yen (S$2.4 billion) for the period, on sales of 4.0 trillion yen.

The steelmaker, created through the merger of Nippon Steel and Sumitomo Metal, reported a 151.9 billion yen net loss on sales of 3.1 trillion yen for the same period last year when the two firms were in the middle of the merger transition.

Rising domestic demand for steel has been boosted by government rebuilding programmes following Japan's quake-tsunami disaster in 2011.

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