- Perdue strategy: Run against Reid, Obama, Pelosi
- White House: More changes to contraception mandate coming
- ‘Operation Normandy’ set to send 3,500 volunteers to border to ‘stop an invasion’
- Netanyahu’s spokesman: Safe to fly to Israel
- Oregon vandals smear cars with doughnuts, pastries, chocolate bars
- Obama’s ‘Katrina moment’ leaves his favorability factor at 42 percent
- Feds tout nearly 200 arrests, $625K in seized cash in Texas border crackdown
- Joy Behar: Sarah Palin should be ‘turning letters over on some game show’
- Rhino poacher in South Africa sentenced to 77 years in jail
- John Kerry defies FAA and flies to Israel to talk peace
GM talks collapse; autoworkers strike
Question of the Day
Thousands of General Motors autoworkers went on strike nationwide yesterday after talks between the automotive giant and the United Auto Workers union on a new labor contract broke down.
It is the first nationwide autoworkers strike since 1976.
Talks resumed between the two sides yesterday.
Negotiators were at the bargaining table for more than 25 straight hours from Sunday morning until the strike, which started about 11:30 a.m., when talks broke down over job security, the UAW said.
Union officials said they want GM to promise that future cars and trucks such as the replacement for the Chevrolet Cobalt small car or the Chevrolet Volt plug-in electric car, still on the drawing board, will be built at U.S. plants.
“We’re shocked and disappointed that General Motors has failed to recognize and appreciate what our membership has contributed during the past four years,” UAW President Ron Gettelfinger said.
Health care costs are another sticking point. The nation’s largest auto manufacturer wants to cut rising labor and health care costs, and the union is determined to protect pay and benefits of the 73,000 members at GM’s 82 plants and warehouses. UAW membership has shrunk by two-thirds over the past three decades.
“The auto industry plays a less important role than it has in the past. But what”s important is what this says about health care benefits and health insurance,” said Mike Davis, a professor and economist with Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business.
“The impact on GM will be negligible if it”s a short strike. However, there is a new reality facing companies: Employers can no longer afford the great benefits they promised to employees.”
The shutdown will cost GM about 12,200 vehicles in the U.S. each day to start, CSM Worldwide Inc. estimated. That may spread to more than 18,100 a day counting Canada and Mexico.
General Motors Corp.’s inventory of unsold cars and trucks provides a cushion for the company, analysts said yesterday.
“Current inventories are adequate to sustain dealers for two to three months,” said Brian Johnson, a Lehman Brothers analyst in Chicago. The Detroit company needed to halt production for about 15 days “making a two-week strike actually, ironically, a lower-cost way to adjust inventory,” he said.
GM officials said they were disappointed in the UAW’s decision.
“The bargaining involves complex, difficult issues that affect the job security of our U.S. work force and the long-term viability of the company. We are fully committed to working with the UAW to develop solutions together to address the competitive challenges facing General Motors,” the company said on its Web site.
GM is restructuring so it can better compete with Asian automakers, but must deal with the labor strike as some of its new products begin to catch on with consumers.
Retailer pays a price for getting too close to Obama
- CARSON: Costco and the perils of mixing politics and business
- David Perdue defeats Jack Kingston in Georgia Republican Senate primary runoff
- IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 computer hard drives
- Beretta moving to Tennessee over Maryland gun laws
- D.C. appeals panel deals big blow to Obamacare subsidies
- 'Straight White Guy Festival' supposedly set for Ohio park
- HURT: The cost of 'free' water in Detroit
- EDITORIAL: Obamacare in intensive care
- Pentagon team dispatched to Ukraine amid crisis with Russia
- Contrasting judgments on Obama's health care hours apart; appeals court calls subsidies unlawful
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq