Bernie's Feed
Apr 1, 2015

Automakers profit from luxury models, North America, China -McKinsey

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The world’s biggest automakers increasingly are making money by producing luxury models and reaping profits in China and North America, management consulting firm McKinsey & Co said in a report issued on Wednesday.

    McKinsey’s findings dovetail with comments by industry executives this week at the annual New York Auto Show. They say they are bullish on the luxury business in China and on the U.S. market because of its strong demand for SUVs and trucks.

Mar 27, 2015

Ford CEO Fields received $18.6 million in 2014 compensation

DETROIT (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) Chief Executive Officer Mark Fields made $18.6 million in salary and other compensation last year, below the $23.2 million that predecessor Alan Mulally received in 2013, the company said on Friday.

Last year’s compensation for Fields, 54, was for half the year as CEO and half as chief operating officer. For 2013, he made $10.2 million as COO.

Mar 25, 2015

U.S. autoworkers face threat as car makers drawn to Mexico

DETROIT (Reuters) – The United Auto Workers union on Wednesday said getting raises for workers at the Detroit automakers will be a top priority in contract talks this summer, but more jobs and production are shifting to U.S. plants without unions and Mexico.

In the next six years, Mexico’s auto production will rise to more than a quarter of the North American market, according to industry consultant IHS Inc.

Mar 24, 2015

UAW delegates debate strategy to end two-tier wages at automakers

DETROIT, March 24 (Reuters) – An attempt to strengthen the
United Auto Workers union’s stand against a two-tiered wage
structure at the Detroit Three automakers failed on Tuesday, but
the debate over the pay gap between newly hired auto workers and
veterans is not over.

UAW leaders are meeting in downtown Detroit this week to map
out bargaining strategy for this summer’s contract talks with
General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler
Automobiles . About 800 UAW members are
debating points in a 72-page outline of the union’s main goals
in the talks.

Mar 23, 2015

U.S. auto labor cost study shows impact of two-tier wage system

DETROIT (Reuters) – General Motors Co (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Ford Motor Co (F.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) have much higher labor costs than their cross-town rival Fiat Chrysler, according to a new study released just ahead of a meeting of United Auto Workers officials as they prepare for contract talks with the Detroit Three.

GM’s (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) U.S. auto workers on average earn about 21 percent more in wages and benefits than their counterparts at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCAU.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) (FCHA.MI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), reflecting the much higher percentage of lower-paid, entry-level workers at FCA, according to a study of 2014 labor costs by the Center for Automotive Research (CAR).

Mar 6, 2015

Nissan expands North America hood latch recall to 878,000 Altima sedans

DETROIT (Reuters) – Nissan Motor Co (7201.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) expanded the North American recall of its top-selling Altima sedan to about 878,000 vehicles because a secondary hood latch may fail and cause the hood to fly up while the car is in motion, according to a company filing with U.S. safety regulators.

A secondary latch is meant to keep the hood down if the primary latch is not engaged. But Nissan said that in model years 2013 to 2015 Altima sedans made from March 6, 2012 to Dec. 31, 2014, the secondary latch may not hold.

Feb 26, 2015

GM’s Indonesia closure highlights automakers’ emerging markets woes

DETROIT (Reuters) – General Motors Co’s (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) decision to shutter a car factory in Indonesia comes as global automakers rethink the timing and scope of investments in emerging markets once touted as engines of growth.

Global automakers poured billions into Brazil, Russia, India, China and other emerging markets during the past few years. For now, some key emerging markets are a drag on sales and profits.

Feb 26, 2015

Takata must save faulty air-bag inflators for litigation, U.S. probe

DETROIT/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. safety regulator on Wednesday ordered Takata Corp (7312.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to preserve all air-bag inflators removed through a recall process as evidence for a federal investigation and private litigation cases.

It was the first time the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an agency of the U.S. Department of Transportation, has ordered a company to preserve evidence for private litigation, said Gordon Trowbridge, a spokesman for NHTSA.

Feb 25, 2015

Car technology troublesome but important to buyers -J.D. Power

DETROIT, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Connecting a mobile phone and
giving voice commands are still causing drivers problems, but
new technology features will be highly desirable to buyers when
they make their next new vehicle purchase, according to a study
of auto dependability released on Wednesday.

Looks and exterior design are still the top reasons why
people avoid buying a certain model, J.D. Power said. But if a
car, truck of SUV does not have the latest technology, 15
percent said they would not buy it, up from only 4 percent last

Feb 20, 2015

Exclusive: UAW president calls GM share buyback proposal premature

DETROIT (Reuters) – United Auto Workers President Dennis Williams, whose union indirectly controls the largest single block of General Motors Co shares, told Reuters an investor group’s proposal that GM buy back $8 billion of its stock is premature, and the amount too high for the company’s long-term health.

An investment firm controlled by Harry Wilson, a former member of the U.S. government task force that restructured GM through bankruptcy in 2009, together with three other hedge funds, is urging it to return part of its roughly $25 billion cash trove to shareholders.