From powerhouse to afterthought: US Steel, once a symbol of America’s economic might, set to be sold to Japanese rival

US Steel’s Edgar Thomson Plant in Braddock, Pennsylvania outside of Pittsburgh. The 122-year-old company, once the backbone of a US economy powered by manufacturing, has agreed to be purchased by Nippon Steel, Japan’s largest steelmaker, for $14.1 billion. The deal faces opposition from politicians and the United Steeelworkers union though. New York CNN — The days may be numbered for an independent, American-owned, US Steel, a one-time backbone of the nation’s economy. US Steel was once the most valuable company in the world. Monday, it agreed to be purchased for $14.1 billion, or $55 a share, by Nippon Steel, Japan’s largest steelmaker. That $14.1 billion sale price, while a 40% premium from where US Steel’s stock closed Friday before the deal was announced, makes it a minor leaguer in today’s economy. The nation’s tech powerhouses – Apple, Google’s parent Alphabet, Amazon, Microsoft and Nvidia – trade at a valuation of more than $1 trillion each. US Steel, even at the sale price, is valued less than 0.5% of the value of Apple, and less than 2% of the value of Tesla. Its revenue last year of $21 billion is roughly what Walmart brings in every two weeks. Or to put it another way, it’s just over half of the annual sales that Apple receives just from its wearable products, primarily its headphones. US Steel’s possible end as an independent, publicly-traded, American-owned company underscores the shift in the nation’s economy away from manufacturing, to services, such as retail or media, or technology. It’s a change that continues to yield deep economic and political implications today. In pictures: The history of US Steel 1 of 25 It’s a slide decades in the making. In 1991, after 90 years in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, US Steel was bounced out of that […]

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By Donato