DAILY BRIEFING

The Baltimore Sun

Delphi steering division cutting nearly 800 jobs

BUENA VISTA TOWNSHIP, Mich.: Nearly 800 jobs are being eliminated at the steering division of Delphi Corp. near Saginaw, Mich. The cuts announced yesterday are hitting 425 hourly workers and 350 employees who are on salary at the Delphi complex in Buena Vista Township. They will kick in March 1. "We've anticipated this for some time," said Mike Hanley, president of United Auto Workers Local 699. Delphi has had temporary furloughs since the start of the year, he told The Saginaw News. Blue-collar workers who volunteer to leave will get severance. Workers with low seniority can leave and get severance or put their name on a recall list. White-collar layoffs are in all departments, including engineering, purchasing, manufacturing and sales. Before the cuts, Delphi's steering division had 3,600 employees. "Delphi Steering will continue to evaluate its staffing needs and make the necessary adjustments based on customer volumes and related economic factors impacting our business," said David Barnas, executive director of global external affairs for steering. Delphi has been operating under bankruptcy protection since October 2005. It put the steering division up for sale after identifying it as a noncore business. A sale to Platinum Equity, a Los Angeles-based private-equity firm, is pending.

Associated Press

BMW cuts 850 workers at Mini plant in Britain

London: BMW abruptly laid off 850 workers and scaled down production yesterday at its British factory that builds the Mini car, an effort to adjust to weaker demand. The job cuts follow a review of operations at the factory in Cowley, near Oxford, where production will be suspended through this week. Those who work weekend shifts will be moved to weekday work, effective March 2, the company said. BMW has 4,700 workers at Cowley, which can turn out 800 cars each day. "While Mini has been weathering the economic downturn, it is not immune from the challenges of the current situation," BMW said. "Against this backdrop, the company felt that a review of its shift patterns was necessary. This decision has not been taken lightly. The plant's union representatives have, of course, been involved in the discussions." BMW had reported this month that sales of the Mini rose 4.3 percent last year to 232,425 cars. Overall, the company said, sales dropped 5 percent across its product range. Last month, however, Mini sales were down 35 percent compared with a year earlier.

Associated Press

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