Steel Mills

USS Sets Q1 Earns Record, Touts Integration With Mines

Written by Michael Cowden

US Steel posted the best first quarter earnings in company history and expects to set another new record in the second quarter.

The Pittsburgh-based steelmaker recorded net earnings of $882 million in the first quarter of 2022, up nearly tenfold from $91 million in the first quarter of 2021 on revenue that increased nearly 43% to $5.23 billion over the same period.

US Steel

The huge financial gains came despite the company’s total steel shipments slipping to 3.69 million tons in the first quarter of this year, down 5.6% from 3.91 million tons in the first quarter of last year.

The windfall profits came in the face of “challenging global dynamics that emerged throughout the quarter,” US Steel president and CEO David Burritt said in a statement released with earnings data after the close of markets on Thursday, April 28.

It was an apparent reference to the war in Ukraine, which started after Russian forces invaded in late February.

“We currently expect the second quarter to be the company’s all-time best second quarter as our balanced customer portfolio, raw materials integration and operating leverage is expected to expand adjusted EBITDA,” he said.

Burritt also touted the fact that US Steel owns its own iron ore mines – on the Mesabi Iron Range in northern Minnesota – assets most of its competitors lack.

“Today’s geopolitical uncertainty and elevated raw material cost environment reinforces to customers the importance of steel that is mined, melted and made in the USA,” he said.

The war in Ukraine initially resulted in soaring costs for pig iron, a key input for electric-arc furnace steelmakers. Much of that pig iron was sourced from Ukraine and Russia prior to the war.

By Michael Cowden,

Michael Cowden

Read more from Michael Cowden

Latest in Steel Mills