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Steel crisis

steel crisis 1962, steel crisis
The steel crisis was a recession in the global steel market during the 1970s recession, following the end of the post-World War II economic boom and the 1973 oil crisis

Steel production had increased exponentially since the industrial revolution, and demand had been especially high during the world wars Steel prices significantly dropped as the market became saturated with steel, and many steel mills in the Western world were driven out of business

Some areas affected by the steel crisis were the Rust belt in North America, the English Midlands in the United Kingdom, the Ruhr area in West Germany and Bergslagen in Sweden The US city of Youngstown, Ohio was among the hardest-hit areas of the steel crisis, with the announced closure of Youngstown Sheet and Tube on September 19, 1977, still known to locals as Black Monday; as of July 2013, Youngstown still has not recovered from the steel crisis1


In Britain, a series of political and economic crises impact the steel industry The steel industry was nationalized in 1967 by the Labour government Historian Alasdair Blair states that British Steel Corporation BSC had "serious problems" including complacency with existing obsolescent plants plants operating under capacity and thus at low efficiency; outdated technology; price controls that reduced marketing flexibility; soaring coal and oil costs; lack of capital investment funds; and increasing competition on the world market Blair argues that by the 1970s the government kept employment artificially high in a declining industry This especially impacted BSC since it was a major employer in a number of depressed regions2


  1. ^ Steven High | Capital and Community Reconsidered: The Politics and Meaning of Deindustrialization | Labour/Le Travail, 55 Journal of Canadian Labour Studies Retrieved on 2016-11-13
  2. ^ Alasdair M Blair, "The British iron and steel industry since 1945" Journal of European Economic History 263 1997: 571


  • Birch, Alan Economic History of the British Iron and Steel Industry Routledge, 2013
  • Blair, Alasdair M "The British iron and steel industry since 1945" Journal of European Economic History 26#3 1997: 571+
  • Dudley, G F, and J J Richardson, eds Politics and Steel in Britain, 1967-1988: The Life and Times of the British Steel Corporation 1990, ISBN 978-1855210721
  • Evans, I M "Aspects of the Steel Crisis in Europe, with Particular Reference to Belgium and Luxembourg," Geographical Journal Vol 146, No 3 Nov, 1980, pp 396–407 in JSTOR
  • Meny, Yves, and Vincent Wright, eds The Politics of Steel: Western Europe and the Steel Industry in the Crisis Years 1987 excerpt and text search
  • Rhodes, Martin; Wright, Vincent "The European Steel Unions and the Steel Crisis, 1974-84: A Study in the Demise of Traditional Unionism," British Journal of Political Science, Apr 1988, Vol 18 Issue 2, pp 171–195 in JSTOR
  • Scheuerman, William The Steel Crisis: The Economics and Politics of a Declining Industry 1986
  • Warrian, Peter A Profile of the Steel Industry: Global Reinvention for a New Economy Business Expert Press, 2016

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Steel crisis

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