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Tata Steel Says India Unit’s Profitabilty to Improve on Sales

Tata Steel Ltd., India’s biggest producer of the alloy, said profitability at its local unit should improve in the fourth quarter ended March 31 on higher sales and prices.

Steel demand in India may rise after the nation’s central bank indicated a pro-growth monetary policy, Tata Steel said in an investor presentation posted on its website. The company expects its loss-making European unit to register better margins in the coming quarters following a surge in prices and purchases by customers.

Indian steelmakers, including Tata Steel, have increased prices of long products, used in construction projects, by 8 percent this year. Tata Steel’s sales volume in the fiscal fourth quarter rose 3.3 percent to 1.77 million metric tons, the Mumbai-based company said in an e-mailed statement on April 9.

Tata Steel shares fell 1.5 percent to 452.80 rupees at close in Mumbai. The stock gained 35 percent this year, compared with a 12 percent increase in the benchmark Sensitive Index.

The Reserve Bank of India left its repurchase rate at 8.5 percent, the highest level since 2008, for a third straight meeting on March 15. It signaled future cuts to bolster slowing growth, while flagging inflation risks, including the fiscal deficit, oil prices and rupee depreciation.

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