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Rising prices boost AK Steel, U.S. Steel stocks

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NEW YORK, June 9 (Reuters) – Shares of some major U.S. steel companies rose on Tuesday and analysts attributed it to rising prices for the flat-rolled steel products made by those manufacturers.

In afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange, AK Steel Holdings’ stock was 8.7 percent higher at $18.93, while U.S. Steel Corp rose 5.7 percent to $37.08.

Other steel company stocks were almost flat, although Steel Dynamics was up 3.7 percent on the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones Iron and Steel Index was 3.7 percent higher.

Analyst Michelle Applebaum of Steel Market Intelligence in Chicago said her latest indicator of global flat-rolled steel prices showed they were at their highest level since last June.

‘They (AK Steel and U.S. Steel) are the biggest flat-rolled players and flat-rolled prices globally are on the way up.’

Applebaum’s Advance/Decliner Index, which tracks the ratio between price increases and decreases, was at 77 percent last week. A reading above 50 percent means there are more increases than decreases and generally bodes well for pricing trends, she said.

Steel prices had been falling since last September, as the economic downturn dried up demand for steel and most manufacturers cut production by more than half.

(Reporting by Steve James, editing by Matthew Lewis) Keywords: STEEL/SHARES

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