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Automakers share profits with employees.

Automakers share profits with employees

General Motors Corp. reported a record $3.87 billion profit on domestic operations in 1984, compared with the previous record of $3.47 billion in 1983. Despite the rise, the average profit-sharing payment for UAW-represented workers dropped to $515 per person, from $606 in 1983. GM said one reason for this was that 100,000 laid-off employees had been recalled during the year, meaning that the available money had to be divided among more people.

Chrysler Corp. earned record profits of $2.4 billion in 1984. Chrysler employees do not have a profit-sharing provision (their current contract, negotiated in 1983 and scheduled to expire on October 15, 1985, terminated such a provision), but Chrysler nevertheless awarded $1,000 to each of its 100,000 nonbonus employees--$500 in cash and a $500 certificate that can be applied toward purchase of a new Chrysler vehicle.

At Ford Motor Co., the 1984 profit was $2.9 billion, exceeding the record $1.9 billion for 1983. The profit-sharing formula, which differs from that at General Motors, resulted in a 1984 distribution averaging more than $2,000 each for 170,000 workers, including low and mid level white-collar workers not represented by the UAW. The 1983 distribution averaged $400 each.

Some critics claimed that much of the profit rise at the companies resulted from the voluntary restraint on shipments to the United States accepted by Japanese producers (and scheduled to lapse on March 31), but Chrysler claims much of its improved finances resulted from a doubling of its output per worker since 1980.
COPYRIGHT 1985 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Author:Ruben, George
Publication:Monthly Labor Review
Date:Apr 1, 1985
Words:264
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