STATE OF BUSINESS: New Cost Factor

Businessmen will probably soon have to take into account a new cost factor: an increase in the price of steel. The increase will be based on 1) inevitable wage boosts and 2) the need for cash for expansion. Last week Ernest Tenner Weir, chairman of National Steel, fifth biggest producer, touched off the campaign for higher prices.

To meet growing demand, said he, the steel industry must expand its 128-million-ton ingot capacity by about 18.5 million tons in the next five years, at a cost of $3.4 billion. The only way to get...

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