(Corrects first bullet point to say loss was $0.60/share, not $0.42/share. Also corrects estimate to $0.42/share from $0.60/share)
* First-quarter adjusted loss $0.60/share vs est. $0.42/share
* Revenue nearly flat at $736 million
April 22 (Reuters) - U.S. coal miner Arch Coal Inc said it expects to ship fewer tons of steel-making metallurgical coal this year after posting a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss due to lower prices and weak demand.
Weak steel demand and excess supplies of metallurgical coal have depressed prices, pushing several companies to shutter mines and cut costs.
Arch Coal, like other coal producers, is paring its assets. The company sold its Hazard thermal mining complex in Kentucky and a unit making cascading conveyor cars in the first quarter.
Arch Coal said on Tuesday it would focus on producing met coal from its low-cost assets in Appalachia, where it has eight mines.
The company cut the top end of its 2014 cash cost outlook for its Appalachian operations to $66 per ton from $67 per ton, but maintained the lower end at $63.
Arch Coal said it now expects to ship between 6.3 million and 7.3 million tons of met coal in 2014, lower than its prior estimate of 7.5-8.5 million tons.
The company’s net loss widened to $124.1 million, or 59 cents per share, in the quarter ended March 31, from $70 million, or 33 cents per share, a year ago.
Adjusted loss was 60 cents per share, higher than the average analyst estimate of 42 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue was nearly flat at $736 million but topped the average analyst estimate of $717.7 million.
Arch Coal shares were little changed in pre-market trading on Tuesday. The stock has risen nearly 12 percent this year to Monday’s close of $4.97. (Reporting by Swetha Gopinath in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)