Nucor is ready to help ‘rebuild this country,' says CEO after Senate passes infrastructure bill

  • Nucor CEO Leon Topalian told CNBC on Tuesday the steelmaker is eager to help "rebuild this country" after the Senate passed a $1 trillion infrastructure package.
  • "Today was a significant day for our nation," the executive said on "Mad Money."
  • Shares of Nucor hit an all-time Tuesday, rising 9.6% on optimism around potential upgrades to the country's roads and bridges.

The chief executive of Nucor cheered the Senate's approval of the bipartisan infrastructure package Tuesday, telling CNBC's Jim Cramer the steelmaker is eager to help "rebuild this country."

Investors also reacted Tuesday to the crucial role Nucor will play in those efforts,, sending the company's shares up 9.6% to close at $118.10 apiece. The stock notched an all-time intraday high of $118.93 during the session. Nucor also was the best-performing constituent in the S&P 500.

"Today was a significant day for our nation. Seeing bipartisan support in approval through the Senate is such a huge step," Nucor CEO Leon Topalian said in an interview on "Mad Money," adding that it's the closest the U.S. has been to having a "meaningful infrastructure bill" in his roughly 25 years in the steel industry.

The $1 trillion piece of legislation still must clear the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives before it can go to President Joe Biden's desk and be signed into law. In the Senate, 19 Republicans joined all 50 Democrats to pass the bill, which includes $550 billion in funding, that will upgrade roads, water systems, transit networks and power grids, as well as expand broadband access.

"As Nucor sees it, it's really through a lens of about three things," Topalian said. "It's about America's safety. America's competitiveness and lastly, the resurgence of American manufacturing. If we've learned anything through this pandemic, it's this nation must be a nation that makes and builds things here in America."

Shares of North Carolina-based Nucor are up 122% year to date, benefiting not only from the prospect of infrastructure upgrades but the broader economic recovery from the Covid crisis. Follow steelmaker U.S. Steel is up 68.81% so far this year.

The entire American steel industry is well-positioned to benefit from the infrastructure bill, should Biden ultimately sign it, Topalian said.

"We are the cleanest steelmakers on the planet, and again poised and ready to go," he said. "If you think about the investment China is making, last year alone they spent $8 trillion on infrastructure. We've got to stay competitive as a nation."

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