Major end-use sectors show signs of life: USS

Jan 31, 2012 | 05:37 PM | Michael Cowden

Tags  USS earn call, US Steel, John Surma, Gretchen Haggerty, steel, fourth quarter, 2011, flat rolled tubular

TORONTO — U.S. Steel Corp. executives offered a cautiously optimistic outlook for 2012 on Tuesday, citing early signs of upticks in a host of markets, including automotive.

In fact, nearly every major flat-rolled steel market is showing signs of improvement this year, U.S. Steel chairman and chief executive officer John Surma said during a conference call following the company’s year-end earnings release.

"Some more than others, but all positives nonetheless," Surma said, noting expected improvements in markets as diverse as automotive, industrial equipment, appliances and tin mill products. Even the construction market may finally be climbing out of its "recessionary doldrums," the top executive of the Pittsburgh-based steelmaker said.

As end markets pick up, so should shipments to service centers, Surma said, noting that U.S. lead times had extended by roughly a week to about six weeks. ....

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