Monday, June 15, 2009

Jobs Watch: Steel and Displacement

Both Trib and PG are running the AP version of a story on how US Steel is bringing back workers at their Hamilton, ON plant. A sign of a rebound in global steel demand? Does not look that way.

Unaddressed, though clearly between the lines in that story is what does it say about jobs at Edgar Thompson? Story clearly points to the explanation that the Canadian jobs are coming back due to statutory issues in Ontario that might force US Steel to make payments to laid off workers. Yet global steel demand is still on life support as best I can tell. Until now it looks like US Steel had been consolidating work at Edgar Thompson even as it closed or ramped down it's operations most everywhere else in North America. Kind of all inevitably leads to the conclusion that there will be Edgar Thompson jobs directly impacted by that decision.

But hey, when are the bulk of those casino hires starting up?

What do I find interesting on top of all of that. Both major papers in town are relying on wire service coverage for news about US Steel. Though I am sure they both may have more coverage from their own folks to follow up.


Blogger Jim Russell said...

In general, I find the newspaper coverage of Rust Belt issues to be much better in Ontario than in the States.

Monday, June 15, 2009 6:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Jake said...

My father has been working at Edgar Thompson Works for 35+ years now. He mentioned to me that up until a few months ago, the plant was operating at half capacity. Now both blast furnaces are back online at ET Works, not due to increased demand, but by closing all the other ones. Apparently ET Works had some major upgrades a few years back and makes it the most efficient place to make steel. I wonder how the efficiency at Hamilton compares to ET Works. It could cause even bigger losses for U.S. Steel if it's a lot less efficient.

Friday, June 19, 2009 2:52:00 PM  

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