Back to Basics

U.S. Steel buys National

It still makes more steel than any other American company, but investors would never know it from U.S. Steel's balance sheet. The firm last year made more than half its revenues from petroleum, a result of its 1982 purchase of Marathon Oil, and only 31% from steel. Last week, though, U.S. Steel took a giant leap back to basics. Directors approved the purchase of National Steel, the seventh-largest maker, for $575 million in cash and stock. U.S. Steel will also absorb some $460 million in long-term National debt, making...

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