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UPDATE 1-U.S. Steel to lay off 545 more people, to idle 2 U.S. plants
January 22, 2015 / 12:36 AM / 3 years ago

UPDATE 1-U.S. Steel to lay off 545 more people, to idle 2 U.S. plants

(Adds details on location and timing of layoffs, share price)

By Kanika Sikka

Jan 21 (Reuters) - United States Steel Corp said on Wednesday it would idle plants in Illinois and Indiana, resulting in the layoff of 545 people, due to weak demand from the oil industry.

The step comes after the company announced earlier this month it would idle its pipe manufacturing plant in Lorain, Ohio, and lay off 614 workers.

The company notified its workers on Jan. 9 that it would close its Granite City Works coke plant in Illinois, which converts coal into coke. This will affect 176 workers, U.S. Steel's representative Courtney Boone said.

The move compliments U.S. Steel's long-term coke strategy to include more electric arc furnaces.

The company also notified its workers in a tin mill in East Chicago, Indiana, that it would idle the plant by Feb. 8, affecting 369 jobs.

"The temporary idling of East Chicago Tin is related to market conditions and the influx of imported low-priced tin which is harming our business," Boone said.

Global oil prices have tumbled almost 60 percent since June forcing a number of oil and gas companies to scale back capital spending plans for 2015.

Up to Wednesday's close, the Pittsburgh-based steel maker's shares have fallen nearly 21 percent. (Additional reporting by Sneha Banerjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Diane Craft and Lisa Shumaker)

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