Commodity stocks have been hammered by the slowdown in China, and U.S. Steel (X) has taken it on the chin, too. With slowing demand from manufacturers as well as concerns about government spending and a housing bubble in Asia, the need for steel in buildings and bridges and other goods has fallen sharply.
Furthermore, a strong dollar environment has made steel prices soft and results in thin margins for operations at U.S. Steel. The result is five losses in the past seven quarters.
Bargain hunters might start to nibble at beaten-down materials stocks in the next few months, but it’s hard to imagine any commodity stock truly breaking out before 2014. That includes this heavily shorted pick.