), the largest U.S. steel maker (by volume), has entered into a
collaboration agreement with specialty alloy maker
Carpenter Technology Corporation
) to develop lighter high-strength steel for automotive
applications. The focus of the partnership will be fuel economy
and passenger safety.
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The collaboration will develop Carpenter Technology's patented
Temper Tough specialized steel alloy, geared for use in flat-roll
automotive and other demanding applications. The alloy was
originally designed for use in the aerospace industry.
The new alloy is expected to help automakers address the recently
mandated Corporate Average Fuel Requirement (CAFE) standards by
"light weighting" vehicles through mass reduction. The CAFE
regulation has been intended to improve the average fuel economy
of vehicles sold in the U.S. The Temper Tough steel alloy also
offers extremely high-strength and ductility attributes, which
will support safety needs.
U.S. Steel, on Jan 29, posted its fourth-quarter 2012 results.
Its losses narrowed 76% year over year to $50 million or 35 cents
a share in the quarter. Excluding a favorable settlement
associated with a supplier contract dispute, net loss was 41
cents a share, below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 75
Revenues clipped nearly 7% year over year to $4,487 million in
the quarter, yet beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $4,396
million. The company faced continued economic challenges and
pricing pressure in the quarter.
Oversupply and increased steel imports into the domestic market
continues to put pressure on steel prices and impact the results
of leading U.S. steel makers like U.S. Steel,
U.S. Steel expects its first-quarter 2013 results to be affected
by sustained economic uncertainty. The company expects near
breakeven results for its Flat-rolled segment in the first
quarter and envisions higher shipment on a sequential basis.
Average spot prices are expected to improve from the fourth
quarter level while raw material costs have been predicted to
U.S. Steel currently carries a short-term Zacks Rank #3