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UAW'S CASSTEVENS COMMENTS ON CATERPILLAR'S CONTINUED FINANCIAL LOSSES IN 1992

 DETROIT, Jan. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- UAW Secretary-Treasurer Bill Casstevens said the continued financial losses of Caterpillar Inc. in the fourth-quarter and the full year of 1992 "call sharply into question the policies and decisions of the top management." Casstevens, director of the UAW Caterpillar Dept., released the following statement after Caterpillar reported a loss of $2 million in the fourth quarter of 1992 and a loss of $2.435 billion for the full year 1992, both including effects of new accounting standards:
 "The announcement of continued financial losses is another ringing alarm bell that should, once again, call sharply into question the policies and decisions of the top management at Caterpillar Inc. The poor financial performance of Caterpillar raises obvious questions about the negative effects that top management's heavy-handed labor relations policies continue to have not only on the workers but on the corporation's customers, shareholders, dealers, and communities in which Caterpillar facilities are located.
 "In fact, the $2 million loss reported in the fourth quarter is a significant understatement of the company's actual performance. It was determined after a $26 million gain related to new accounting standards. Furthermore, it was after $56 million in various nonrecurring gains, of which nearly all was related to the sale of assets to the company's lift truck joint venture. Thus, the company's overall loss from operations totaled $84 million in the fourth quarter. And, if profits from the company's Financial Products operations are excluded, Caterpillar's fourth-quarter loss climbed to $96 million for its Machinery and Engines business.
 "Moreover, it is puzzling to many shareholders, stakeholders, analysts, and other concerned parties that Caterpillar's management would, just three months ago, have predicted marginal profitability of the corporation in the fourth quarter, and then abruptly, a scant six weeks later, flip-flopped to estimates
of a probable loss not only for the quarter but for the year. Financial analysts said at the time that a loss only two-thirds as large as the $84 million would hardly be considered marginal.
 "Given the magnitude and the escalating nature of these losses, Caterpillar stakeholders have every right to ask management, 'Where's the beef.' After all, the top management promised great results from their two-year-long campaign to get to the 21st century via a 19th century labor relations strategy.
 "If this is their idea of success, it is hard to imagine what failure might look like. The sad fact is, in the face of massive evidence to the contrary, management thinks they can impose a lower standard of living and draconian working conditions on their workforce, and somehow get improved productivity, high quality, and an enhanced reputation for their products in return.
 "One thing is clearer than ever: that is, the company, the UAW- represented workforce, and all others affected by the parties' relationship need the stability that only a signed, mutually agreeable labor contract can provide. It is obvious to anyone that unhappy workers are unlikely to produce and contribute to a company's success in the same way that satisfied and well-motivated workers would. Common sense alone would dictate the value of a positive labor relations situation, notwithstanding the recent reports of late completions of machinery and other reports of internal productivity snags in Caterpillar plants. A ratified, mutually agreed labor agreement would send a positive message to Caterpillar's customers, dealers, shareholders, and workers."
 -0- 1/25/93
 /CONTACT: Frank Joyce of UAW, 313-926-5291/
 (CAT)


CO: United Auto Workers; Caterpillar Inc. ST: Michigan, Illinois IN: AUT SU:

KD -- NY101 -- 8796 01/25/93 18:07 EST
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Date:Jan 25, 1993
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