Ford Motor to slash North America, Asia salaried workers by 10%: Source

Ford Motor plans to shrink its full-time workforce in North America and Asia as it works to boost profits and its sliding stock price, a source told Reuters.
The job cuts are expected to be revealed as early as this week.
The job cuts are expected to be revealed as early as this week. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

WASHINGTON/DETROIT (REUTERS) - Ford Motor plans to shrink its salaried workforce in North America and Asia by about 10 per cent as it works to boost profits and its sliding stock price, a source familiar with the plan told Reuters on Monday (May 16).

A person briefed on the plan said Ford plans to offer generous early retirement incentives to reduce its salaried headcount by Oct 1, but does not plan cuts to its hourly workforce or its production.

The move is part of a previously-announced plan to cut costs by US$3 billion (US$4.19 billion), as US new vehicles auto sales have shown signs of decline after seven years of consecutive growth since the end of the Great Recession.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday evening that Ford plans to cut 10 per cent of its 200,000-person global workforce, but the person briefed on the plan disputed that figure.

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It is not clear if there are additional cuts planned.

Ford remains focused on its core strategies to "drive profitable growth," the company said in a statement. "Reducing costs and becoming as lean and efficient as possible also remain part of that work," it said. "We have not announced any new people efficiency actions, nor do we comment on speculation."

The automaker may face potential fallout from Republican US President Donald Trump, who has made boosting auto employment a top priority.

But Ford plans to emphasize the voluntary nature of the staff reductions.

Ford said April 27 when it reported first-quarter earnings that it planned to cut US$3 billion in costs.

"We are continuing our intense focus on cost and the reason for that is not only mindful of the current environment that we're in, but also I think preparing us even more for a downturn scenario," chief executive Mark Fields told analysts in a conference call.