UPDATE 3-U.S. Steel reports loss, plays down lockout impact

Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:44pm EDT
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* Q1 adjusted loss 35 cts vs earnings 67 cts year earlier

* Sales drop to $4.60 billion from $5.17 billion

* Higher costs to weigh on flat-rolled business in Q2

* Says is meeting customer needs despite Lake Erie lockout

April 30 (Reuters) - United States Steel Corp reported a first quarter loss on Tuesday, but reassured investors it is meeting its commitments to customers, despite a lockout at a large facility in Canada.

The Pittsburgh-based steelmaker's shares, which were lower until late afternoon, turned positive during a call with analysts and investors that touched on the lockout several times.

U.S. Steel locked out unionized workers at its Lake Erie works in Nanticoke, Ontario, on Sunday morning. The last lockout at Lake Erie ran for eight months and shut down production.

"We're not making steel today in Canada, regrettably, but we are selling steel in Canada," Chief Executive John Surma said on the call.

The lockout does not affect processing facilities in nearby Hamilton.   Continued...