German unions know that “end of October” means more for GM than October 31. German unions now demand a final deal with Opel by October 26. If there is no deal, it will cost Opel: Opel can defer paying a 4.3 percent industry-wide wage rise until October 31, if there is no deal, Opel has to pay. Also on October 31, GM will publish its third-quarter earnings.
Opel and the unions have a deal that rules out plant closures and firings through the end of 2014. The unions want Opel to rule out compulsory redundancies through 2016 “and beyond,” Reuters says. This would save Opel immediate money, but it would also close the door on much needed capacity reductions.
The unions tell Reuters that Opel signaled its willingness to sign a labor deal that would go past the current horizon of its mid-term business plan approved late in June, which lasts through 2016. GM was hoping it could announce better news in its earnings report.