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Ford Motor Co. Message Board

  • informationlouisgreen informationlouisgreen Mar 27, 2014 10:59 PM Flag

    Where is lovelincons, questionater ? Bill Ford explians why labor killed the US auto industry

    How did they do that since LABOR COSTS defined as legacy, work rules, wages , pension , health benefits have little effect on profit or production costs .
    They did it by making the concessions above not that they were enough for the future.
    This finally ends the silly discussion on labor costs . Oh sure these guys will spin it someway .
    But we know they DO not lower the costs of raw materials
    They do not do anything but build the cars ,which could be done at 13 bucks and hour.

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    • Would you do it for $13/hour?

    • An American icon is days away from bankruptcy and, for a number of reasons, pulls itself together and comes roaring back and you want to put a negative spin on this story? I guess I agree with you about one thing. Labor does have an affect on the price of a car even if it is only 6-7%. However, to say that labor does not affect other areas of the price of a car is not true. As with most companies labor comes up with many of the cost saving and production improvement ideas that lead to better efficiency and quality. Historically, Ford's turnaround will go down as one of the greatest businesses success stories in history. Why would Bill Ford deny labor's role in that turnaround? No doubt part of that was due to labor and legacy cost cuts but it goes far beyond just salary cuts.

      Sentiment: Strong Buy

      • 3 Replies to bstaurrey
      • informationlouisgreen informationlouisgreen Mar 30, 2014 11:35 PM Flag

        They are saying incentive spending is going up . March sales lacking. Incentive around 3300 per car. Imagine a reasonable wage hourly of 14 hour . Eliminate pensions as in almost every job today in the US . Federal style health benefits .
        That 3300 would be covered and the bottom line would be what is needed. Mark my words and remember when the US auto industry collapses again be it 10 years or 15 it will.
        Watch the Ford contract be touted as holding the line as labor costs rise again.
        And the white collar gains as the UAW holds the Big 3 hostage again.
        And the they give in because they are profitable.
        Eventually as we already are heading that way car sales will drop, another recession will come , and they will lose billions fast.

      • You are right. Line workers often suggest efficiency improvements as well as ergonomic ones.


      • I can tell you that in most of the contract years I was involved with, except during Nasser's term, both Ford and the UAW wanted to be the lead in contract negotiations. They wanted this because they had the best working relationship by far of the big three and they wanted to set the pattern. Even though Ford is a public company, many of the employees have felt they were working for a family business which stemmed from Ford's rich history. An attitude like this will result in the worker giving over and above what they "have to do" which can give an edge over its competitors. Ford workers also used to have a much higher percentage of Ford stock in their voluntary savings plan than either GM or Chrysler. I am not sure if those attitudes still prevail but I would guess they still do. As Bill Ford mentioned, during good times the UAW was able to negotiate benefits based on those years but when hard times hit, although there were many that complained, the contract was always opened and re-negotiated in order to help out. I can remember one time Ford workers turned down Ford's request to match those concessions of Chrysler and GM and it was the right decision. Ford was doing so much better than either of the other two and there was no reason to do so. The little bit of difference it would have made was basically immaterial and would have been more of a slap in the face to the workers than anything else. This was fairly recently and it proved out to have little if any affect on Ford's competitiveness.

        Sentiment: Strong Buy

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