Costs, housing, China are wild cards Moody’s

Dec 27, 2007 | 09:44 AM |

The outlook for the U.S. steel industry is relatively stable for 2008, but rising raw material costs and the spreading U.S. housing crisis cloud the horizon somewhat, according to a recent report by Moody's Investors Service Inc.

Global demand remains strong, partially offsetting weakness in the U.S. appliance, auto and housing markets, according to the New York-based credit ratings agency. And while steel prices could slip somewhat in 2008, they should remain at historically high levels, Moody's said.

But turmoil in the residential construction market is showing signs of spreading into the non-residential sector. "We remain cautious that a weakening U.S. housing market will have spillover effects in virtually all end markets," Moody's analysts said.....

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