- - Wednesday, October 12, 2011

AUTO

Chrysler, UAW agree on new contract

DETROIT | The last of Detroit’s carmakers has reached a deal with the United Auto Workers union.

Chrysler Group LLC and union negotiators agreed Wednesday on a new four-year contract that creates 2,100 new jobs. The company will also invest $4.5 billion in its plants under the deal, which covers 26,000 U.S. workers.

The deal is less generous than those given to General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. It includes a $3,500 signing bonus and $1,000 in annual bonuses. Most Chrysler workers won’t get yearly raises but could receive profit-sharing checks if the company makes money. The agreement also raises entry-level wages to $19.28 per hour by 2015. Chrysler’s workers must ratify the agreement.

This is the first contract since Chrysler’s government bailout and trip to bankruptcy court two years ago and the first since management of the company was taken over by Italian automaker Fiat SpA.

GM workers ratified their labor agreement last month. Ford workers are still voting.

JOBS

Companies posted fewer job openings in August

Employers advertised fewer jobs in August than the previous month. Some may have pulled back on hiring plans in the face of wild stock-market swings and renewed recession fears.

Companies and governments posted 3.1 million job openings in August, down from 3.2 million in July, the Labor Department said Wednesday.

The drop was the first in four months, although July’s openings were the highest in nearly three years.

Still, there’s heavy competition for each job. Nearly 14 million people were out of work in August, which means an average of 4.6 unemployed workers competed for each opening. That’s worse than July, when the ratio was 4.3. In a healthy economy, the ratio is roughly 2-1.

STORES

Wal-Mart reverses revenue decline

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