American Axle Finally Gives Financials to UAW
American Axle has blinked. After adamantly refusing to turn financial info over to the UAW as part of the negotiating process, AA finally acquiesced and provided the documents to the union. The Detroit News quotes UAW VP James Settles saying they need the information to "to make important decisions regarding proposals which will affect pensions, health care (and) profit-sharing" (i.e., "we want to see how badly they were bullshitting us when they demanded pay and benefit cuts"). He also said they were looking at the information to make sure the company gave them everything they'd requested, so this still may not be enough to precipitate a return to the bargaining table any time soon. In the meantime, GM's VP of vehicle sales, Mark LaNeve isn't worried: "We have more than adequate inventory to meet market demand. This is where we intended to be." With over a quarter million pickups still in stock, you have to wonder where they'd be if the strike hadn't closed the factories.
It seems that GM moving some product to Dana has kickstarted the negotiation process again. Someone will undoubtedly tell me if it's otherwise, but not revealing their financials seems like a stupid negotiation tack to me because if what AA was saying was true, then showing it to the UAW might make them more likely to consider their situation...I'd think.
It will be interesting to see what kind of documentation was given to the uaw. Even though they signed a confidentiality agreement with management, it's amazing how many news articles come out during the union/management meetings with the weasle words, "... from a source inside the UAW negotiation team, who spoke on condition of annomity since he is not allowed to speak for the union..."