UPDATE 3-ArcelorMittal to raise $3 bln after Chinese steel exports hit profits

viernes 5 de febrero de 2016 07:26 GYT

* Plans rights issue of $3 bln

* Raising further $980 mln from sale of Gestamp stake

* Aims to cut net debt to below $12 bln

* 2015 core profit down 28 pct, sees weaker 2016 (Adds details on EU response, analysts)

By Philip Blenkinsop and Robert-Jan Bartunek

BRUSSELS, Feb 5 (Reuters) - ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steelmaker, launched plans on Friday for a $3 billion share issue to help reduce debt and cut costs, having been hit by a plunge in steel prices which it blamed on a surge in cheap exports from China.

ArcelorMittal's share price has dropped 60 percent in the past 12 months, cutting the group's market value to just 6.2 billion euros ($6.94 billion).

The shares were down a further 6.5 percent on Friday, making them by far the worst performer in the European FTSEurofirst300 index.

The company, twice the size of its nearest rival, reported that its core profit (EBITDA) dropped by 32 percent last year to $5.2 billion and warned the result this year would only be "in excess of" $4.5 billion as it sees little improvement in overall global demand for steel this year.   Continuación...