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Today, U.S. Steel Corp. received approval for its Alabama electric arc furnace, Aleris might expand its European automotive aluminum plant and copper futures hit a new three-week low.
Way Paved for U.S. Steel’s Alabama EAF
A Jefferson County, Ala., Commission committee today approved tax abatements on $277.5 million in capital investments on two U.S. Steel projects. The first project would allow U.S. Steel to invest $230 million in an electric arc furnace technology for an existing steel mill just outside of Fairfield, Ala.
The tax abatement would be $775,000 annually in state and county property taxes over 10 years, according to county data reported by Al.com.
The second project, by U.S. Steel’s Oilwell Services, would create a coupling manufacturing facility for tubular products in Fairfield, with a capital investment of $47.5 million.
Aleris Mulls More European Automotive Aluminum
Aleris Corp. may expand its capacity for production of aluminum sheet for automobiles in Europe when the economy there recovers, its top executive said, as demand for lightweight materials continues to grow.
The company has the “capability” to add a second continuous annealing line at its rolling mill in Duffel, Belgium, though it has not yet decided on any specifics.
Copper Futures Fall
Copper futures tumbled to a three-week low on Wednesday on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, as mounting concerns over the health of China’s property sector dampened appetite for the red metal.
Reuters reported that China’s National Bureau of Statistics said in a report earlier in the day that home prices in China declined in 66 of the 70 cities tracked by the government in February from a month earlier.
New home prices slumped 5.7% on year last month, following a decline of 5.1% in January. Copper for May delivery tumbled 5.2 cents, or 1.99%, to trade at $2.581 a pound during European morning hours after hitting an intraday low of $2.568, a level not seen since February 24.