Exclusive: U.S. Commerce head Ross sees wage increases for steel workers

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Friday that wage increases are a likely outcome of the current contract talks between U.S. steel companies and the United Steelworkers union, and said that they would be a bellwether for the broader U.S. labor market.

“In many ways the current negotiations between the steel companies and the USWA (United Steelworkers) probably will be a bellwether,” Ross said in an interview with Reuters. “It wouldn’t be surprising if there are some wage increases coming from that,” he added.

United States Steel Corp X.N and ArcelorMittal USA, a unit of ArcelorMittal MT.AS, are currently negotiating labor contracts for about 31,000 workers represented by the United Steelworkers union.

Reporting by Karen Freifeld, David Shepardson, David Lawder and Chris Sanders; Editing by Leslie Adler