A metals and mining sector-related ETF strengthened Friday as United States Steel (NYSE: X) jumped on strong first quarter earnings results.
The SPDR Metals & Mining ETF (NYSEArca: XME), which is designed to track the broad metals and mining segment, was among the better performing non-leveraged ETFs of Friday, rising 3.9%.
Supporting the rally in the metals and mining space, United States Steel shares surged 17.4% Friday. X makes up 3.4% of XME’s underlying portfolio.
United States Steel posted adjusted earnings of 47 cents per share, compared to expectations of 17 cents per share and last year’s first quarter earnings of 32 cents, TheStreet reports.
Total adjusted net earnings hit $81 million, compared to last year’s first-quarter net earnings of $24 million. U.S. Steel also revealed an adjusted EBITDA of $285 million.
U.S. Steel attributed its strong results to its flat-rolled and tubular business segments performing well year-over-year, but it said the Europe segment experienced some big declines.
“Over the past few years, we have made strategic investments across our footprint, with a focus on our most critical flat-rolled steelmaking assets,” chief executive David B. Burritt said in a statement, boasting of the quarter’s “strong financial results.”
Burritt also added that the company’s new “endless casting” and rolling line at Mon Valley Works will further provide it with a competitive edge goring forward. U.S. Steel will also invest over a billion dollars for a new endless casting and rolling facility.
The steelmaking industry has been hard hit by falling prices after steel prices declined almost 10% year-to-date. Domestic steel prices have even weakened while prices on iron ore, a key component for steel, increased after a deadly collapse of a mine-tailing dam in Brazil curtailed supply on the market.
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