Bernie's Feed
Oct 23, 2013

In Detroit bankruptcy trial, union says city had pensions in sight

DETROIT (Reuters) – A trial on Detroit’s eligibility for bankruptcy protection kicked off on Wednesday with opponents claiming the city tried to bypass restrictions on cutting workers’ pensions, as experts in municipal bankruptcy around the country watched closely in a case that could set important precedents.

At issue is whether Detroit, which in July filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history, negotiated in good faith before it sought protection from its creditors.

Oct 23, 2013

U.S. Bankruptcy Court to decide if Detroit really is broke

DETROIT, Oct 23 (Reuters) – Is Detroit bankrupt? A federal
judge began hearing arguments Wednesday morning in Detroit on
the largest municipal bankruptcy filing in U.S. history that
will ultimately will answer that question.

For a city saddled with massive debts and fighting to
deliver services to its residents, the answer may sound simple.
But the decision by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes on
whether Detroit is eligible to restructure its debts and
liabilities under Chapter 9 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code that
covers municipalities will rest on a slew of complicated issues
to be addressed over a multi-day hearing.

Oct 10, 2013

Exclusive: VW divided on union for U.S. plant but worker vote a must

DETROIT (Reuters) – Volkswagen AG’s (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) top executives are divided over whether and how workers at the company’s Tennessee assembly plant should be represented by a union, but ultimately will insist on a formal vote by those employees, a person with knowledge of the board’s thinking said.

While VW’s U.S. executives are hostile to the United Auto Workers, the eight-member management board may still ask the union to help set up a German-style employee board at the Chattanooga plant, said the person, who asked not to be identified.

Oct 4, 2013

Tesla in talks with Samsung SDI for battery supply deal

DETROIT/SEOUL Oct 4 (Reuters) – Popular electric carmaker
Tesla Motors Inc may name South Korean battery
producer Samsung SDI Co Ltd as an additional
supplier as the California auto upstart tries to add more models
and expand, although at least one source familiar with the
discussions described the deal as being far from done.

Both Tesla and Samsung SDI, a unit of Samsung Electronics Co
Ltd, on Friday confirmed that the two companies are
in talks about the South Korean company supplying battery
technology to Tesla, the maker of the best-selling U.S. electric
car, the premium Model S sedan with a price tag of $70,000.

Oct 1, 2013

Head of VW labor group to meet Tennessee workers-sources

DETROIT/BERLIN (Reuters) – Volkswagen AG’s (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) most influential labor leader will meet with workers at the German automaker’s plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Wednesday to discuss the possibility of the United Auto Workers union representing them, several sources said.

Bernd Osterloh, head of the automaker’s global works council, will participate in a dialogue about the possible establishment of a German-styled works council at the plant, said the sources, who asked not to be identified.

Oct 1, 2013

Ford, Chrysler increase U.S. sales in September

DETROIT (Reuters) – Chrysler Group LLC Ford Motor Co (F.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) beat analysts’ expectations on Tuesday by posting their best September U.S. sales increases in six and seven years, respectively.

Ford’s sales rose 5.8 percent to 185,146. Chrysler, an affiliate of Italy’s Fiat SpA (FIA.MI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), said its sales were up 1 percent at 143,017.

Sep 26, 2013

U.S. union efforts at VW plant may face hurdle after eight workers say misled

DETROIT (Reuters) – Eight employees at Volkswagen AG’s Tennessee plant have said they were misled into endorsing the United Auto Workers, handing some ammunition to opponents of the union’s efforts to organize for the first time at a foreign-owned U.S. factory.

The UAW has countered that the complaints, which were filed with the National Labor Relations Board, are a “frivolous and baseless” attempt to delay negotiations between the union and Volkswagen.

Sep 26, 2013

US union efforts at VW plant may face hurdle after 8 workers say misled

DETROIT, Sept 25 (Reuters) – Eight employees at Volkswagen
AG’s Tennessee plant have said they were misled into endorsing
the United Auto Workers, handing some ammunition to opponents of
the union’s efforts to organize for the first time at a
foreign-owned U.S. factory.

The UAW has countered that the complaints, which were filed
with the National Labor Relations Board, are a “frivolous and
baseless” attempt to delay negotiations between the union and
Volkswagen.

Sep 25, 2013

Analysis: UAW sees VW’s German union model as best hope in South

DETROIT (Reuters) – If the United Auto Workers is successful in organizing Volkswagen AG’s (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) plant in Tennessee, it will owe a lot to the unique relationship the automaker has with labor in Germany.

The powerful IG Metall union that represents Volkswagen’s German workers is six times the size of the UAW, with 2.26 million members. IG Metall’s outsized influence – labor representatives hold half the 20 seats on VW’s supervisory board – could give the UAW its best chance yet to organize autoworkers at a foreign-owned plant in the South.

Sep 24, 2013

Fiat rethinks alliance with Chrysler after IPO filing

DETROIT, Sept 23 (Reuters) – Chrysler Group LLC was forced
to file paperwork for an IPO by its second-biggest shareholder
on Monday, escalating a spat with main owner Fiat SpA
which said it could scale back its commitment to the U.S.
automaker.

Fiat, which owns 58.5 percent of Chrysler, wants to take
full control and buy out the rest of the stock owned by the
United Auto Workers trust fund, but has balked at the more $5
billion being demanded.