• Feb 13, 2009
In 2002, General Motors had 177,000 employees in North America. By the end of 2008, that number had shrunk to 93,000, or 49% fewer employees than it had just six years earlier. GM plans to further cut its white collar workforce by 3,400 by May of this year, and the General is looking to cut 10,000 white-collar posts globally by the end of 2009. That will make nearly 100,000 GM jobs lost; enough people to fill the University of Michigan football stadium.

Ford and Chrysler have also resorted to heavy cuts in the face of shrinking market share and an industry-wide slowdown. Ford has seen its US workforce shrink to about 65,000 workers; 44% fewer than the Blue Oval employed five years earlier. Chrysler was leaner than Ford and GM were five years ago, yet they've still shed 32,000 jobs during that time. Chrysler now employs 56,600 employees, and the Pentastar has a package out to all of its hourly workers.

It's amazing to think that by June of this year, Detroit automakers will have shed nearly 200,000 jobs in under six years. As crazy as that number sounds, we don't think anyone will be surprised if a lot more workers lose their jobs before this year is over.

[Source: bnet]


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  • 38 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Nice job union people talk about greed, talk about bragging how much sleep you got at work. Turn out the lights the party's over
        • 5 Years Ago
        CalSalesEmb:

        I'm 50 yrs old, NEVER once belonged to a union. I'm a technology guy that work on Wall Street. Wall & Water Streets to be exact.

        In 2000 I shared a cubicle with an I-29 worker from India. He was one of about 20 I-29 workers on my floor.

        When the financial district re-opened after 9/11, I was at another one of our buildings a 75 Wall Street. Two bus loads of workers from India were brought in one Monday morning. Each of them was paired up with the person that he or she was supposed to replace, for training. Anyone that refused to train the worker, was escorted off the premises immediately. The others were told to train their replacement and given a "package".

        From 2000 to now, the American labor force went through a transition of: Employment --> Underemployment --> Unemployment.

        No jobs = No Money = No Consumer Spending = The shit we're in right now. It was all engineered on Wall Street.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Actually, you need more like 106,201 (soon to be 108,000+) to fill Michigan Stadium.

      Go Blue!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Heck, if you go to Michigan v. Ohio State they announce the attendance at around 112,000-115,000!

        Go Blue!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Let's hear it for the GLOBAL market, let's ship more jobs overseas. Hell why stop at our industrial jobs, let's also ship our farming jobs overseas too, and what about our high technology jobs, let's ship them out too. Oh wait, we already did.

      Look, the bottom line is no industry is worth keeping here, if it gets in the way of Wall street making a profit. Greed is king, Greed trumps common sense and moral decency. But wait what's with this weak morality argument. What are we now, a bunch of p_$$y _$$ed LIBERALS?
        • 5 Years Ago
        RUDEBOi:
        Ever heard the saying, when the US sneezes, world catches a cold? That's where we are now. We crossed breaking point., and yes, it was at the prodding of the barons on the Street, the US has exported her wealth. The irony is, the same folks who cry about the cost of labor, are the ones who also hates the idea of national healthcare.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The American auto industy have been Gord.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I read in Detroit News yesterday GM is having a very hard time with it's bond holders and convincing them to to take less than the UAW's 50 cents on the dollar. They want what the UAW is getting but if they get it GM will won't low on cash, they'll be in the negative. Chrysler is ok in this regard because their bondholders are backed by Cerberus but GM needs those concessions and they need them by Tuesday.

      If that doesn't happen GM could see a whole lot more than 50% job job loss.

      As for blaming policies and the like GM, Ford, and Chrysler have the capacity to build something like 17 millions cars combined (probably more). That is more than the entire market sells and that would be ok if there were no Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia, VW, BMW, and so on. They were still staffed like they were in the 1970's when the big 3 were the only game in town. Now the instead of a pie sliced 3 ways it's sliced about 30 ways and as much as it sucks they need adjust accordingly.

      This sounds cold but it's a business, not a charity and if ANYONE wants to work they need to do this.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The plan is quite simple, Tagg

        GM, Ford and Chrysler should continue to build the majority their cars at a loss to drive out the foreign competition. That way the Big 3 can sell 16-17 million cars a year, but only a small percentage of the sales would have to be profitable. After all, they only need to make enough profit just to sustain their antiquated business models.

        The foreign competition would leave our shores, because they could not compete. I sure hope, Toyota doesn't get wind of this plot. Ooops, too late!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Okay, I was researching a strike by a parts supplier (transmissions?) to a Ford plant in Missouri (?) that has shut down the truck line last week. Now, Ford is going to shut down the car line as well. Anyone got any more info on this one?

      I did find another looming strike at Ford that no one is talking about yet. Crazy people striking at a time like this. Hello!

      Ford Strike Threat Over Moves to Fund Jobs Cuts With Pay Cuts

      "LONDON, February 5, 2009: Moves by Ford to cut around 850 jobs across its UK plants, and freeze a negotiated pay deal, have today (Thursday) been denounced as a 'betrayal' of a loyal workforce by the workers' union Unite, which is warning the car giant that cutting workers' pay to meet redundancy payments could lead to industrial action." - More news at:

      http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2009/02/05/408118.html
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yup, it's German transmission company on strike. Apparently our European counterparts aren't going to roll over and play dead for the Big 3. True to form, they are headed for a confrontation with the Detroit automakers. This is going to get really ugly.
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is really troubling news. It is my hope that they don't continue to slash costs. What will we do with all the unemployed people?
      • 5 Years Ago
      I would say most of these jobs didn't go overseas. Most of them either disappeared or the production of the parts was contracted out to other companies within the US. GM used to make most of their subassemblies themselves within AC/Delco or such, and that's gone way down.

      But yeah, some parts went overseas too.
        • 5 Years Ago
        While you're partially right about the breakoff of OEM suppliers, the truth is that most of the job loss is due to the constant loss of sales. Most of which is to Toyota and Honda with Hyundai and Nissan bringing up part of that number too.

        The amount of jobs lost to foreign competition doesn't even come close to the number of employees that have been hired by those companies either, so the argument that jobs aren't lost to overseas countries is mostly false.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Whoops!
        • 5 Years Ago
        I was wondering that too. Does this figure count when GM "outsources"
        something to Delphi? Too many people hear the word outsource and
        immeadiately think that the work went overseas while most outsourcing
        takes place with in the country.

        When a company pays someone to clean windows thats outsourcing too but people don't look at it like that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @jamie

        I will gladly pay a premium for my next Honda if they run them out of the US.

        PS that isn't going to happen.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I was wondering that too. Does this figure count when GM "outsources" something to Delphi? Too many people hear the work outsource and immeadiately think that work went over seas while most outsourcing takes place with in the country.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Thanks NAFTA!
        • 5 Years Ago
        While you're at it, also thank excessive corporate income taxes, ridiculous pro-union legislation, corrupt politicians, etc.

        I would expect that as technology improves, that a car-maker can manufacture the same number of cars with fewer people.
        • 5 Years Ago
        And you know what? That is the only reason why I wanted McCain as president. Lowering corporate taxes is fundamental to the American economy. If he reneged on everything but that, I would have been happy.

        Raising personal income tax is fine if corporate taxes are lowered. This is way to generate jobs.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I love you Jake. Completely agree.

        Although this statement is a little idealistic, economics says trade benefits all participants. Also the fact the it is weeding out the weak companies. That also involves what companies are suffering due to a poor government. They have to go somewhere else to be able to compete, it is not their fault.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "mean exceptionally poor management overseeing the design and production of unappealing automobiles then I'm right there with ya!"

        GM was the #1 retailer of autos that whole time. They still sell way more SUVs than anyone sells hybrids. Save your "poetic eco-justice" for the coffee shop.
        • 5 Years Ago
        If by "excessive corporate income taxes, ridiculous pro-union legislation, corrupt politicians" you mean exceptionally poor management overseeing the design and production of unappealing automobiles then I'm right there with ya!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Chapter 7 here we come!!!

        Go USA
        • 5 Years Ago
        It is true that Corporate Tax is strangling America. In Ireland several years ago they lowered their Corporate Tax rate to 12.5%. You even get tax credits in Ireland for R&D. As such Ireland now has a flourishing Corporate Economy. What, you thought Nancy Pelosi's private jet would pay for itself?
      • 5 Years Ago
      @216,

      I thought the 200C Concept showed potential. However, I think we'd be kidding ourselves if we thought it would really see the light of day without it being ruined in prep for production.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Not to worry because the Obama Administration will compensate for the loss by adding mucho many "green" jobs. I suspect many of those jobs will involve lawn mowing, but time will tell.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The American auto industy have been Gord.
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