NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF) are higher by 5.15% to $8.58 in early afternoon trading on Wednesday, after the company announced its plan to sell its Logan County Coal assets in southern West Virginia to Coronado Coal II LLC, for $175 million in cash.
The company said the assets sale is "another important step in executing our strategy to transform Cliffs into a stronger, pure-play U.S. iron ore supplier."
The company is planning on using the proceeds to reduce its debt.
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Cliffs has been suffering due to slumping prices for iron ore and metallurgical coal, which was triggered by a decline in the Chinese steel industry, Bloomberg reports.
The transaction is expected to close by the end of this year.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates CLIFFS NATURAL RESOURCES INC as a Sell with a ratings score of D-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate CLIFFS NATURAL RESOURCES INC (CLF) a SELL. This is driven by a few notable weaknesses, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its deteriorating net income, generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself."