U.S. Steel Wins Tax Breaks From One of America’s Poorest Cities

PHOTO: Winter Watch screen grab/CNBC

By Rajesh Kumar Singh | 8 February 2019

REUTERS — United States Steel Corporation founded Gary, Indiana in 1906 – naming it after co-founder Elbert Henry Gary – and the city’s fortunes have been closely tied to the company ever since.

When the firm started losing business to cheap Asian imports in the 1970s, waves of layoffs followed as Gary became a haven of blight, crime and lost population.

Last year, the city harbored hopes for a revival after President Donald Trump imposed tariffs on steel imports and the company planned a $750 million investment to modernize Gary Works, its largest North American plant.

But it’s now clear those hopes will not translate into new steel jobs, even after the city and state offered the firm a $47 million tax break package. […]

Has automation driven job losses in the steel industry?

By Louis Jacobson | 8 March 2018

POLITIFACT — As President Donald Trump weighed imposing tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum, some commentators have warned that this would be a misguided approach.

Noah Smith, a columnist for Bloomberg View and a former finance professor, wrote a column in which he noted, among other things, that a crucial issue facing metals-producing industries isn’t foreign competition — it’s automation.

Tariffs, Smith wrote, won’t “bring back good jobs at steel and aluminum factories. Since 1990, production of metals in the U.S. has held roughly constant, but the number of people employed in the industry has fallen steadily.” […]

Read “In an Inverted World, Citizens Are Forced to Pay Multinational Firms and Billionaires for the Privilege of a Job”

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