Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF) - NYSE
  • Tue, Jul. 12, 3:58 PM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF +9.1%) soars to a new 52-week high before pulling back a bit, after J.P. Morgan maintains its Overweight rating on the stock and raises its price target to a Street-high $10.50 from $7.
    • The recent bankruptcy of Essar Steel Minnesota has further solidified CLF's "defensible business model," according to JPM analyst Michael Gambardella, who also sees a likely positive catalyst from near-term earnings beats amid higher steel pricing.
    • CLF's short interest, at 43% of outstanding float, is "extremely high despite the wave of positive developments," Gambardella also says.
    • CLF shares have more than quadrupled since closing 2015 at $1.58.
    | Tue, Jul. 12, 3:58 PM | 10 Comments
  • Tue, Jul. 12, 9:24 AM
    | Tue, Jul. 12, 9:24 AM
  • Mon, Jul. 11, 8:49 AM
    • Record iron ore shipments moved through Australia's Port Hedland terminal in June, as BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) and Fortescue Metals (OTCQX:FSUMF) operated near full capacity and inventories rose at Chinese ports.
    • Port Hedland shipments to China rose to 34.5M metric tons in June from 31.7M metric tons in May, breaking the previous record of 33.9M in March; total iron ore shipments from the port jumped to 41.8M metric tons in June, also a record, from 39.4M in May.
    • Rising production amid a drop in Chinese steel production led Australia's government on Friday to cut its iron ore price forecast, citing concerns over slowing growth in demand.
    • Other relevant tickers include RIO, VALE and CLF.
    | Mon, Jul. 11, 8:49 AM | 4 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 8, 4:52 PM
    • India’s Essar Steel places its Minnesota iron ore mine and processing plant into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after the state revoked its mining leases, possibly setting the stage for Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) to take over the project.
    • The state cancelled Essar's leases to mine taconite iron ore after the company missed a July 1 deadline to complete construction of the $1.9B Nashwauk plant, which broke ground in 2008.
    • It is not clear how Essar’s assets will be handled by the bankruptcy court, but Minnesota's governor says he recently met with CLF CEO Lourenco Goncalves and that negotiations are ongoing; Goncalves has expressed an interest in the Nashwauk site if CLF can get the state mineral leases.
    • CLF says the state's termination of the Nashwauk mining leases is "the first step in a long-term development process that we believe holds tremendous potential."
    | Fri, Jul. 8, 4:52 PM | 14 Comments
  • Tue, Jun. 28, 11:31 AM
    • Morgan Stanley raises its iron ore outlook for this year and next, saying the top suppliers in Australia are managing the addition of new supply and steel demand in China will remain supported.
    • The firm ups its overall 2016 forecast by 17% to $46/metric ton and its 2017 outlook by 13% to $42, according to its quarterly forecasts, although its revised call of $35/ton for the final three months of this year indicates its view that prices are still expected to drop below last year’s trough.
    • Stanley says it is possible that the two biggest miners in Australia, BHP Billiton (BHP +2.5%) and Rio Tinto (RIO +2.5%), are “adjusting” the addition of new supply to accommodate weaker market conditions.
    • Also: VALE +5.9%, CLF +4.5%.
    | Tue, Jun. 28, 11:31 AM | 4 Comments
  • Tue, Jun. 28, 9:18 AM
    | Tue, Jun. 28, 9:18 AM
  • Thu, Jun. 16, 7:37 AM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) -5.1% premarket after filing for a $300M common stock offering, saying it plans to use the proceeds for general corporate purposes and to pay down debt.
    • CLF has climbed 201% YTD for the strongest rally among all iron ore miners and its borrowing costs have fallen to the lowest in nearly two years.
    • CLF's’ bonds have returned 86% YTD, the best performance among more than 300 notes issued by mining and metal companies globally, after losing 36% a year ago, according to Bloomberg.
    | Thu, Jun. 16, 7:37 AM | 1 Comment
  • Wed, Jun. 15, 3:25 PM
    • Steel companies are surging after Nucor (NUE +2.1%) released better than expected guidance and Bank of America upgraded U.S. Steel (X +8.4%) to Neutral from Underperform with an $18 price target, raised from $10, citing more stable earnings and higher steel prices.
    • Nucor's upbeat commentary follows Steel Dynamics' (STLD +3.1%) upside Q2 guidance issued earlier this week, citing improved metals spread and shipments, and both of which follow May's U.S. Commerce Department ruling that it is imposing a 266% tariff on Chinese cold-rolled steel imports.
    • BofA now forecasts $673M in 2016 EBITDA for U.S. Steel vs. consensus forecasts of $424M, based on the higher prices.
    • The firm also praises U.S. Steel's ability to push out its debt maturities, although leverage remains steep with total debt at ~5x projected EBITDA.
    • Also: AKS +8.3%, CLF +3.7%, MT +4.1%.
    | Wed, Jun. 15, 3:25 PM | 8 Comments
  • Fri, Jun. 10, 10:27 AM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF +0.6%) is upgraded to Outperform from Neutral with a $7.50 price target, raised from $4, at Macquarie, which cites a favorable view of earnings and cash flow due to the rally in domestic steel pricing and volumes.
    • Noting that domestic steel mills are ramping up production, given lower imports and a 70%-plus increase in flat roll steel prices from Q4 2015 lows, the firm expects CLF's earnings power will enjoy a boost by the healthier environment and believes the higher steel price has not been factored into consensus estimates.
    • Macquarie also cites CLF's announced early restart of United Taconite and the resulting increase in its 2016 sales and production guidance to a respective 18M and 16.5M long tons.
    | Fri, Jun. 10, 10:27 AM | 10 Comments
  • Thu, Jun. 9, 12:48 PM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF -6.2%) says it will restart operations at its United Taconite division in August, two months earlier than expected.
    • CLF credits the earlier start to recently contracted business with new client U.S. Steel Canada to supply the majority of their iron ore pellet requirements for Q3 and Q4.
    • The order prompts CLF to raise its 2016 sales volume guidance to 18M long tons from an earlier outlook for 17.5M long tons and to lift Its production forecast by 500K tons to 16.5M tons.
    • CLF had idled its United Taconite and Northshore Mining operations in Minnesota late last year, citing high levels of steel imports which hurt demand for its iron ore pellets.
    | Thu, Jun. 9, 12:48 PM | 1 Comment
  • Mon, Jun. 6, 11:58 AM
    • Steel stocks (SLX +2.1%) are higher as U.S. Treasury Secretary Lew blames China for flooding low-cost steel into the U.S. and other markets.
    • Lew is urging China to cut excess steel production, as the two countries open high-level talks overshadowed by tension over the South China Sea.
    • "The Chinese government is... engaged in economic warfare against the U.S. and sadly, they are winning,” Nucor (NUE +0.3%) CEO John Ferriola says in a WSJ interview, adding that China two months ago set a new production record after spending two years promising to cut production.
    • Steel producers are mostly higher: X +2.9%, MT +2.1%, CLF +2.8%, AKS -1%, STLD +0.3%, RS +0.4%.
    | Mon, Jun. 6, 11:58 AM | 17 Comments
  • Thu, Jun. 2, 10:35 AM
    • Iron ore has lost nearly all of 2016's gains, as ore with 62% content fell another 0.5% to $48.18/dry metric ton after posting the biggest monthly loss in about five years in May, which has left prices that topped $70 in April less than $5 above 2015’s year-end level.
    • Inventories at China’s ports rose to 100.65M tons last week, the highest since December 2014,and holdings have expanded for eight of the past nine months, just ahead of the period when steel demand usually sees a seasonal slowdown.
    • “Demand remains weak and supply is still increasing. There’s a good chance prices will end the year lower,” Shenhua Futures analyst Wu Zhili tells Bloomberg.
    • Relevant tickers: VALE, BHP, RIO, MT, CLF, TCK
    • Now read Goldman sees iron ore headed back to $35 as glut returns
    | Thu, Jun. 2, 10:35 AM | 10 Comments
  • Tue, May 31, 12:50 PM
    | Tue, May 31, 12:50 PM
  • Tue, May 31, 10:17 AM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF +38.4%) rockets higher following an upgrade from J.P. Morgan and signing a commercial agreement with ArcelorMittal.
    • JPM had upgraded shares to Overweight from Neutral with a $7 price target, saying that rising steel sheet prices should aid earnings for the remaining quarters of 2016 and that steel pellet contracts with MT likely will be renewed favorably; as if on cue, CLF then announced a 10-year pellet supply agreement with MT.
    • CLF says the new supply deal replaces two existing contracts that expire in December 2016 and 2017, raises the minimum tonnage of pellets to a higher level than previous agreements, and preserves the company's position as sole iron ore pellet supplier of MT's Indiana Harbor West and Cleveland Works steelmaking facilities, while maintaining the current level of pellet supply to MT's Indiana Harbor East facility.
    • "The new agreement also removes any remaining uncertainty about Cliffs," Chairman and CEO Lourenco Goncalves says.
    • Now read Cliffs Natural still viewed negatively at Axiom on "coming deluge of iron ore" (from May 27)
    | Tue, May 31, 10:17 AM | 45 Comments
  • Tue, May 31, 9:17 AM
    • Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) +29.8% premarket after J.P. Morgan upgrades shares to Overweight from Neutral with a $7 price target, as the firm expects rising steel prices to generate much higher near-term earnings growth.
    • JPM's Michael Gambardella says he is confident that CLF's steel pellet supply contracts with ArcelorMittal - CLF's largest customer - that are expiring near the end of this year will be renewed favorably.
    • The analyst notes that CLF management's guidance still assumes a hot rolled coil steel price of $450/metric ton vs. the current spot price of ~$610.
    | Tue, May 31, 9:17 AM | 32 Comments
  • Tue, May 31, 9:15 AM
    | Tue, May 31, 9:15 AM | 2 Comments
Company Description
Cliffs Natural Resources, Inc. operates as an international mining and natural resources company, which is engaged in the exploration and production of iron ore and high and low volatile metallurgical coal. It is organized through a global commercial group responsible for sales and delivery of... More
Industry: Industrial Metals & Minerals
Country: United States