Home Business and Economics This Week in Business: GM, Manufacturing, and More

This Week in Business: GM, Manufacturing, and More


GM Removes Health Benefits From Striking Workers

GM has removed health benefits from its striking workers. Recently, people have been protesting the company, wanting better benefits and pay. The UAW launched the strike on Monday after negotiations reached an impasse. However, they expected the rocky talks between Ford, GM, and Fiat Chrysler.

In addition, GM said that they would roll the health insurance into the union costs. The union previously unsuccessfully campaigned for GM to pay for it. “We understand strikes are difficult and disruptive to families,” GM spokesman Jim Cain said in an email. “While on strike, some benefits shift to being funded by the union’s strike fund, and in this case hourly employees are eligible for union-paid COBRA so their health care benefits can continue.”

US Manufacturing Output Rebounds

US manufacturing outputs increased largely in August, after a slow third quarter. However, even with a surge in the production of machinery and similar goods, the outlook still looks grim. Due to fears of the trade tensions and slowing global economies, business activity slowed.

“We would want to see another solid gain in September before we would be prepared to say that there are signs that manufacturing is pulling out of its trade-related slump,” said John Ryding, chief economist at RDQ Economics in New York. Economists also say it is too early to conclude that the manufacturing recession is over.

FedEx To Increase Shipping Rates

FedEx announced plans to increase shipping rates at its express unit on Monday. They plan to increase the unit, which delivers packages using planes, by around 4.9% for domestic, export and import services starting next year. In addition, the company announced a similar increase for ground and home delivery. They will increase these rates by 6%. They also won’t charge residential surcharges during the holiday season.

The Fed Set To Cut Interest

The Fed announced plans to cut the interest rate by the end of the week. In a two-day-long meeting that began Tuesday, policymakers have debated how much they should lower it by. However, deep disagreements due to the economic outlook may prevent another rate drop by the end of the year. The Fed originally voted to lower rates back in July.

LG To Cut Jobs

LG Display announced a voluntary job cut for its employees amid financial losses. This comes a day after Chief Executive Han Sang-beom had stepped down following an emergency board meeting. However, LG doesn’t know how many of its employees would take the offer. A company spokeswoman said the cuts were part of an emergency plan to increase cost efficiencies in panel production as well as other expenses.