October 5, 2018 / 7:16 PM / 17 days ago

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

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.

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross gestures during an interview with Reuters in his office at the U.S. Department of Commerce building in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2018. REUTERS/Mary F. Calvert

“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

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