U.S. Steel Declares $1.8 Billion Writedown; Spot Price of Nickel Rises

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U.S. Steel declared a surprising $1.8 billion writedown on Friday, which is “quite a mouthful for a company with a total market cap of around $3.5 billion,” reported The Wall Street Journal.

“U.S. Steel did not disclose exactly which plants were responsible for the writedown, and named only business units. Analysts said the writedown involved operations acquired as part of the company’s purchase in 2007 of Canadian steelmaker Stelco Inc. for $1.1 billion and of Lone Star, TX-based Lone Star Technologies Inc. for $2.1 billion”

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On Friday, October 18, the day’s biggest mover was the nickel spot price, which saw a 0.9 percent increase on the LME to $13,960 per metric ton. After falling for two days, the 3-month price of nickel rose 0.9 percent on the LME to $14,030 per metric ton. The Indian nickel cash price finished the market day up 0.3 percent per kilogram.

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Chinese stainless steel prices closed flat for the day. The price of Chinese ferro-chrome held steady. The price of Chinese ferro-moly was unchanged.

The price of Chinese 316 stainless coil remained essentially flat. The price of Chinese 304 stainless coil continues to hover for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap held steady. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap continues to hover for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese primary nickel remained essentially flat.