When union contract negotiations are kicked off, the press is on the topic like white on rice, but interest quickly wanes after bargaining has been underway for a couple weeks. Right now we have no idea what's going on at the negotiating table, but one thing is for certain; both sides are gearing up for the possibility of a strike. The UAW currently has a war chest of almost $1 billion, and on August 5-6, meetings will take place to decide how the cash is doled out and to train local leaders on the art of the strike.

Strike meetings during contract talks are nothing new, but as bad as the car business is for the domestic automakers, both sides are hoping work stoppages can be avoided. While the automakers can ill-afford a strike, $1 billion only amounts to about $5,500 per person with 180,000 active UAW members, and workers probably want paychecks to stop even less than the automakers. We don't know how these negotiations will all pan out, but if the domestics can't close the $30/hr labor cost gap with their Japanese competition, there's a chance none of the active or retired UAW workers will have a retirement to look forward to.

[Source: Auto News]

Share This Photo X