Ford to cut 4,600 jobs

Ford Motor Co. said today it will eliminate 4,600 salaried jobs in North America, or as much as 10% of its U.S. white-collar employees, by year-end to save money as its sales and market share decline. The second-largest automaker said about 75% the employees will be given an early-retirement program. "The voluntary separation program is a difficult but necessary action," said Jacques Nasser, Ford

Ford Motor Co. said today it will eliminate 4,600 salaried jobs in North America, or as much as 10% of its U.S. white-collar employees, by year-end to save money as its sales and market share decline. The second-largest automaker said about 75% the employees will be given an early-retirement program.

"The voluntary separation program is a difficult but necessary action," said Jacques Nasser, Ford president and CEO. "These actions will help us operate the business more efficiently, streamline our organization and align our skill base with future needs."

The automaker said it plans a fourth-quarter charge of about $700 million for the job cuts. It also said it expects to take a third-quarter charge of about $200 million, mostly from writing down investments in electronic commerce and automotive-related ventures.

Ford's U.S. light-vehicle sales fell 11% so far this year and its market share fell 1.6% to 23.2%, hurt in part by new truck models at General Motors Corp. and Toyota Motor Corp., according to Bloomberg. The other big-three automakers – General Motors and DaimlerChrysler’s Chrysler Group – previously announced plans to cut jobs to halt slides in market share and profit.

General Motors last December said it would eliminate 15,000 jobs in North America and Europe with the phasing out of its Oldsmobile brand. Chrysler in January said it would cut 26,000 positions and close several factories over three years.

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