ThyssenKrupp AG and Voestalpine AG, Germany’s and Austria’s largest steelmakers, slumped after Salzgitter AG scrapped guidance for a break even for its steel unit this year.
Salzgitter plummeted as much as 7.8 percent and was trading down 6.3 percent at 1:45 p.m. in Frankfurt, heading for its lowest close since September 2005. ThyssenKrupp fell 0.8 percent to 11.925 euros in Frankfurt, while Voestalpine declined 1.3 percent to 20.4 euros in Vienna.
Germany’s second-biggest steelmaker said yesterday after markets closed that given the deteriorating economic outlook for Germany and the euro area, many steel processors and traders were expecting business to stagnate, adopting a “wait-and-see stance.” This in turn has had a “notably negative” impact on demand for rolled steel, Salzgitter said.
The steel unit accouned for about 30 percent of Salzgitter’s sales last year. The company’s other four units -- Tubes, Trading, Services and Technology -- “are developing in line with the results forecast,” Salzgitter said.