U.S. Steel (NYSE:X) will indefinitely idle a blast furnace at its Mon Valley Works in Pennsylvania, keeping the 1.4M st/year No. 3 blast furnace down after it completed scheduled maintenance, Argus Media reported Monday.
It is U.S. Steel’s (X) second idling in less than a month, after the company idled a blast furnace at its Gary Works mill in Indiana in early September.
The two idled furnaces have a combined raw steel production capacity of 7,945 st/day, Argus said, noting if they were to remain down for the entire Q4, 731K st of raw steel output would be removed from the market.
U.S. Steel (X) shares closed +6.7% in Monday’s trading, and other steel stocks also were notable gainers, including (WOR) +11.3%, (CLF) +8.5%, (NUE) +6.6%, (STLD) +6.2%, (MT) +5.8%, (RS) +4.5%.
Separately, Argus also reported contract negotiations between U.S. Steel (X) and the United Steelworkers union are set to resume October 5, as the two sides seek a contract that would replace an agreement that expired September 1.
Additionally, BHP (BHP) raised its long-term demand forecast for steel consumption (SLX) by 2% to 42M metric tons by 2030, citing the rising need for the product in the global shift towards the decarbonization of power generation.
Investors should wait patiently for the “bust” opportunity to arrive before considering adding exposure to U.S. Steel (X), JR Research writes in an analysis posted recently on Seeking Alpha.