By on March 6, 2017

 

Ren Cen. GM

General Motors has said it will discharge 1,100 employees at its Lansing Delta Township assembly plant in Michigan in May. Last year, America’s largest automaker announced an additional 800 jobs at its Spring Hill plant in Tennessee to aid in production of the updated GMC Acadia. However, those positions seemed to have come at the expense of its Michigan workforce.

The cuts come after GM’s promise to invest another $1 billion into U.S. factories earlier this year. President Trump has insisted that American car builders manufacture more product within the country while condemning any ventures in Mexico. While General Motors may be shifting production south, it’s not so far south as to garner any presidential ire. The automaker has claimed that the billion dollar investment would maintain or create 1,500 U.S. jobs. Still, the net employment loss in this instance does not seem to reflect that. 

The Lansing factory will continue assembling the Buick Enclave and Chevrolet Traverse after a month of retooling, GM spokesman Tom Wickham told Reuters in an emailed statement.

Last November, the company announced it would be forced to eliminate roughly 2,000 jobs — ended the third shift for the Lordstown, Ohio and Lansing Grand River plants at the beginning of 2017. It also said there were plans to suspend the second shift from its Detroit-Hamtramck plant, which would mean 1,300 lost jobs by March.

Those layoffs were largely related to consumer interest gradually turning away from small passenger cars. GM added roughly 8,000 new jobs last year and intends to bring more up from Mexico. Axle production for the next generation Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra will be consolidated in the United States, creating an additional 450 American jobs.

While GM CEO Mary Barra initially stated that the president’s desires had no impact on the company’s future plans, she also said, “I want to be part of the solution that allows the country to be strengthened along with business,” in a January press conference. That, in conjunction with the billion dollar investment, seems to have at least restored Trump’s faith in the automaker.

“[General Motors’] committed to invest billions of dollars in its American manufacturing operation, keeping many jobs here that were going to leave. And if I didn’t get elected, believe me, they would have left,” Trump said last month.

[Image: GM]

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34 Comments on “GM to Layoff 1,100 Michigan Employees as Domestic Production Shifts South...”


  • avatar
    pmirp1

    This weekend I went looking at Silverados. It seems like they are made in US and Mexico. What is amazing is whether assembled in America or Mexico, the Mexican content is over 50% for all Silverados I looked at. Same was true for Tahoe and Suburbans. It is amazing to me for vehicles that easily trade at 40k+ minimum, GM is not willing to put more effort into making them more American. That’s where the American based hiring should be. There is no justification to build expensive vehicles like that in Mexico but pure greed. In comparison, it seems F150s have much more American content.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      “There is no justification to build expensive vehicles like that in Mexico but pure greed.”

      My last employer (Fortune 100 company) sent ~100 jobs to Mexico when it closed a *very* profitable assembly plant here in PA, which was part of a $120 million business. Greed is the answer, all right.

      I left before my eyes had to witness that spectacle, which eventually would have included the exportation of my own job as an engineer.

      “Design Anywhere, Build Anywhere” was their motto, and they took a very agnostic view of their suppliers, which meant that years of relationship-building with good suppliers went out the window in favor of 1-year contracts with guaranteed 3% reductions in price if you wanted to keep the business longer.

    • 0 avatar
      jjster6

      Why? Do Americans have the sole right to produce goods in this world? You expect people to buy Boeing airplanes and a host of other goods made in America. How do you suggest they pay for them if they don’t have something to trade?

      • 0 avatar
        tomLU86

        Americans don’t have the sole right to produce. Nor do they have the sole obligation to prop up the rest of the world.

        They DO, or SHOULD, demand their government look out for the general interests of the general majority of Americans (you’ll never satisfy 100%).

        Globalization is good when you have good paying job, and can buy things for less. When you’re making $15/hour or less, and buying YOUR OWN health insurance, in America it’s not so great.

        Sounds like SCE has witness globalization up close in a way that most advocates of “free” trade have not.

        Remember, just about anything can be outsourced. And if it can’t–that’s what we have H1B Visas. Even for doctors.

        Globalization is a sure thing for Americans (and Europeans, Japanese, Chinese) at the top, because it enriches them for sure. For the rest of us–there are winners and losers, and the trend has been more losers than winners for the past 30 years.

        • 0 avatar
          jjster6

          OK tomLU86, I hear some of your concerns. Mexico can produce for less because they don’t worry about things like safety laws or environmental protection. But that’s not the whole story. Look at demographics. Mexico has a young population ready to work. America is filled with a bunch of old geezers who are only getting older. The USA needs other countries as much as they need the USA. Who’s propping who up?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            “The USA needs other countries as much as they need the USA. Who’s propping who up?”

            You must have missed all the D.R.E.A.Mers.

            I suspect without the drug trade Mexico would have been leveled by now for getting out of line. If Barry Seal were still around you could ask him why Mexico was/is tolerated.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          “For the rest of us–there are winners and losers”

          Anyone without a marketable trade or post secondary education is going to be a “loser”. Tariffs and other barriers to trade will compound the problem. Education/training is the key. One has to view it the same way one views investment in infrastructure. You need both to secure economic growth.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Keep clinging to your denial while you’re training some H1B to help transition your safe educated position to India.

          • 0 avatar
            OldManPants

            Uh, Todd, dear… Lou isn’t denying anything.

            Or is my little squijums referring to someone else?

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Looks like “Wee Todd did” prove’d’ my point.

            I’m not worried about some little brown guy in pajamas, oh sorry person of a different “culture” ruining the work ethic in my line of work.

        • 0 avatar
          Ol Shel

          I’d suggest that globalization is good when it provides access to good not otherwise available in other parts of the world.

          It’s really bad when it just chases the poorest nations with the lowest wages.

      • 0 avatar
        DAC17

        OMG. A common sense response by jjster6! Not many of those floating around these days…

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      I agree. Really it’s the principal of the thing. Silverado/Sierras carry obscene, astronomical profits.

      But I’m positive most owners of Hecho en Mexico, GM pickups would puke in their helmets if they knew where they were made. It’s a scandal if you ask me.

      It’s almost too incredible to believe, as much as those Silverado/Sierra “Heartland” etc commercials are played ad nauseam.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @DenverMike – most don’t look beyond the corporate badge.

        • 0 avatar
          RobertRyan

          @Lou_BC
          They, the buyers are very confused as all vehicles sold in the US are a hodgepodge of parts from.everywhere.This sort of debate used to be ” hot” a year or two ago, but the debate has died down or gone away

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        DenverMike,
        Those large profits are easily reduced by allowing imported pickups to compete.

        Remove the chicken tax and watch pickup prices drop.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @BAFO – Oversimplify much? Yes they both have *beds*, but what makes you think fullsizers are in direct competition with midsize pickups? Midsize pickups vs midsize SUVs and CUVs makes a lot more sense.

          But the marketplace dictates prices. And all pickups have been under-priced, apparently.

          Fullsize pickup prices (along with all pickups) are currently outpacing inflation, despite all the newly added midsize pickup choices.

          So if you think our pickup prices are high *right now*, wait until we have unlimited midsize, global choices, including junk from India and China, none of which are even “fullsize”!!

    • 0 avatar
      rocktobersky

      Why didn’t you just check out a 100% Texas made Toyota Tundra… isn’t that American enough for you. Leave it to Asians to give Americans work and “sun-tanned” necks pride.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    At least Camaro and Malibu production is still going strong….

  • avatar
    mikey

    Arcadia ??..

  • avatar
    tomLU86

    I think Americans who are so enamored of Mexico’s low cost of production should actually go and live their for a few years. Then we can have this conversation.

    It costs less because it’s a poor country. Many American companies (certainly GM), treat their Mexican workforce well. That’s nice.

    Not every poor country has to stay poor—just look at Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, even China.

    The Mexicans are coming here–Americans are not emigrating there.

    Still, Mexicans can’t afford the products they make–just as more and more underemployed Americans cannot.

    The US government should have been an advocate of ‘fair’ trade. You tax our products, we tax yours. You don’t have the same environmental / OSHA regs, we will consider it and tax accordingly.

    Now it’s too late to undo all the damage.

    • 0 avatar
      Advance_92

      Mexico is not a poor country, it is a rich country with massive income inequality. Something about low taxes and no infrastructure other than what manufacturers can justify for their own needs.

      • 0 avatar

        Indeed. Go to Mexico City. There are lots of rich folks. Of course, they have to live carefully. Kids go to school with security to avoid kidnappers. Their homes are surrounded by high walls and big gates. BMW has a lovely showroom specializing in the “up armored” versions of their cars. There is a very two tiered version of life-one third world and one very first world, right together but not really touching.

        One of the world’s great cities, but make sure you stay on the correct side, gringo.

    • 0 avatar
      Charliej

      Actually many US citizens are emigrating to Mexico. Today is the fifth anniversary of my wife and I arriving in the village where we live in Mexico. Before we left the US we converted everything to cash and headed South. I can tell you that we have enjoyed our retirement much more in Mexico than we would have in the US. After five years, we have Mexicano friends as well as our gringo friends. Our Spanish is improving the longer we are here. Medical care is better here and that is important as we age. Medical care for people our age is also free. What is most important to us, is the fact that the Mexican people are welcoming and friendly to all. The blind hatred of immigrants promoted by Trump and the republican party will be the downfall of the US. Actually, many Mexicans do own new cars. Many more Mexicans own older cars, but they do own them.

      • 0 avatar
        Whittaker

        “The blind hatred of immigrants promoted by Trump and the republican party”

        You seem to be casually equating immigrants and illegal immigrants.
        Seems to be a common theme these days.

        Tell us more about Mexico.
        How do they treat illegal immigrants?

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          Whittaker,

          They don’t have anything rammed up their 4ss like most do in the states about immigrants, legal or illegal.

        • 0 avatar
          Whittaker

          I’ll answer my own question.

          Illegal entry into Mexico is equivalent to a felony punishable by two years’ imprisonment.

          Document fraud is subject to fine and imprisonment; so is alien marriage fraud.

          Evading deportation is a serious crime; illegal re-entry after deportation is punishable by ten years’ imprisonment.

          Foreigners may be kicked out of the country without due process and the endless bites at the litigation apple that illegal aliens are afforded in the USA.

          Mexican Law enforcement officials at all levels, by national mandate, must cooperate to enforce immigration laws, including illegal alien arrests and deportations.

          The Mexican military is also required to assist in immigration enforcement operations.

          Native-born Mexicans are empowered to make citizens’ arrests of illegal aliens and turn them in to authorities.

          • 0 avatar
            jjster6

            Whittaker,

            So North Korea throws whole families into death camps because one member sat on a picture of “Dear Leader.” Does that mean the USA should abandon the Constitution because other countries don’t have freedoms and due process?

            Abandoning the principles of the US Constitution, in the name of defending the nation, destroys the liberties that make the nation worth defending.

      • 0 avatar
        tresmonos

        I agree with you to an extent. There is a level of safety in the US that doesn’t exist in Mexico. If you put yourself out there, the level of risk to your life is much much higher. You have to accept the fact that you can be murdered out in the desert after you empty your pockets. Once you accept that little fact of life, sure retirement in Mexico is fantastic.

        Granted, I lived in the DF and was a complete degenerate. My views are heavily biased. I would retire down there but I also know that every day is a winning lottery ticket that I’m alive. Quality of life can exceed perceived and real risk.

        YMMV.

  • avatar
    Lorenzo

    Well, with Opel sold off, maybe put some Buick assembly in Michigan. Buick City is long gone, but there’s plenty of slack elsewhere for a few new Buick models, like the Buick Regal wagon. Make it a tall wagon with traditional comfortable Buick seats and AWD, and it just might sell.

  • avatar

    I guess it does not matter where you work at GM. You still work for a shrinking company that produces product that are not popular.

    In 1996 GM was the world’s largest company with a mediocre product line. Today they are the world’s third largest company with a mediocre product line.

    GM blows all night long.

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