GM Strikes A Deal With The UAW As Ford and Fiat Chrysler Are Next
After 40 days, the longest auto workers' strike since 1970 came to an end Friday as the United Auto Workers and General Motors reached an agreement. Both sides are ready to move on as the strike cost GM nearly $2 billion in lost production and employees nearly $1 billion in lost wages.
The agreed upon deal, which won 57% of the UAW member vote, gives members 3% wage increases, prevents health care plan prices from increasing, removes the cap on profit-sharing with employees and provides a process for temporary employees to become permanent employees. The deal also includes a signing bonus, but in some instances doesn't cover the lost wages from the six-week strike.
However, the UAW was unable to get GM to agree to one their core issues. The UAW wanted GM to move jobs from Mexico to a plant in Ohio that closed. 1,400 workers were laid off from the plant with only a couple hundred moving to other plants. As part of the deal, GM agreed to open an electric car battery factory near the plant, but doing so will involve only a couple hundred jobs at lower wages.
Also as part of the deal, the two sides agreed to form The National Committee on Advanced Technology, which will meet quarterly "to manage the impact of new technologies that threaten a century-old manufacturing process currently employing tens of thousands." The goal of the committee, which will be composed of three representatives from each side, will be to provide training for employees to avoid work displacement as a result of new technologies and processes.
A letter to UAW members at GM read "From the outset your brothers and sisters, local leaders and bargaining team members identified key areas of concern to focus on throughout this process: a clear pathway for temporary workers to full-time status; shortening the in-progression period; maintaining our current health plan and costs; improving our share of profits; as well as protecting job security and future work. We are pleased to announce that thanks to your solidarity and sacrifice, we have achieved gains toward all of these bargaining priorities."
"We delivered a contract that recognizes our employees for the important contributions they make to the overall success of the company, with a strong wage and benefit package and additional investment and job growth in our U.S. operations," said Mary Barra, GM Chairman and CEO. "GM is proud to provide good-paying jobs to tens of thousands of employees in America and to grow our substantial investment in the U.S."
After striking a deal with GM, the UAW now has its sights set on Ford and Fiat Chrysler. Ford, which has the best relationship with the UAW, is the largest employer of UAW-represented autoworkers. Sources say the UAW is not afraid to call member strikes at Ford and Fiat Chrysler if they push back against the gains they made with GM.
Will he defend himself? In what may be the definition of irony, a former Apple lawyer who was in charge of enforcing the company's Insider Trading Policy has been indicted for insider trading. The government alleges Gene Levoff traded Apple stock between 2011 and 2016 using inside information prior to it becoming public. The indictment described his strategy, saying "When Levoff discovered that Company-1 had posted strong revenue and net profit for a given financial quarter, he purchased large quantities of stock, which he later sold for a profit once the market reacted to the news." He’s facing six counts of securities fraud and six counts of wire fraud.
Add it to the list. French luxury conglomerate LVMH has reportedly proposed a $14.5 billion acquisition offer for luxury jeweler Tiffany & Co. LVMH, which owns an extensive list of luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Fendi, has been looking to expand its presence in the U.S. for years. The offer for Tiffany values the company at about $120 per share, more than 20% higher than Friday's closing price of $98.55. Both companies declined to comment on the news.
Expensive comment getting more expensive. The Employees Retirement System of Texas is the ninth institutional investor to pull funds from Fisher Investments since Ken Fisher's remarks on October 8. Texas ERS has pulled $350 million from Fisher Investments, bringing the total withdrawals to more than $3 billion. The pension's spokeswoman wrote "With respect to our fiduciary duty, we are defunding Fisher Investments, which had served as an external manager in the international equities portfolio with $350 million [as of Sept. 30] under management." Fisher Investments had $112 billion in assets under management as of September 30, according to the firm.
Here we go again. If you're bummed about not having the opportunity to invest in the WeWork IPO, you may get the next best thing. Ucommune, the "Chinese WeWork," has reportedly filed to go public by the end of the year. The company, which was last valued at $2.6 billion, has hired Citigroup, Credit Suisse and Bank of America to work on the listing. In what is likely a result of WeWork's failed IPO, the decision to go through with the listing will depend on the feedback from potential investors.
Do it for the 'gram. According to the National Retail Federation, individuals are expected to spend an average of $86.27 on Halloween this year, which comes out to nearly $9 billion. Social media has fueled a large part of Halloween spending. A survey from CompareCards revealed 48% of millennials purchase Halloween items for social media posts. Nearly a third of millennials said they spend more on Halloween than any other holiday. Matt Schulz, who wrote the CompareCards report, said "Lots of people love Halloween, lots of people really enjoy spending just to get on social media."