NEW YORK U.S. Steel Corp. is considering vertically integrating into natural gas if the opportunity is right, its top executive said.
"Weve actually examined a few opportunities, and I think its something well continue to look at, subject ... to availability of capital," chairman and chief executive officer John Surma said during the steelmakers recent first-quarter earnings call.
Surma said that the company was looking at a variety of approaches to enter that market, be they "financial" or "physical, where youre taking a working interest or you have a production team," he said. "I think we have all that on the griddle."
The move could represent a large cost-saving for U.S. Steel, a major user of natural gas. Higher natural gas prices are expected to contribute to an operating loss in the Pittsburgh-based steelmakers flat-rolled segment during the second quarter, according to the companys first-quarter earnings statement.