From the LA Times:
General Motors Corp. on Tuesday posted a first-quarter net loss of $1.1 billion, its worst quarter in 13 years, due to disappointing sales in the crucial North American automotive market and soaring healthcare costs.
Other analysts, though, said GM could be holding back as part of its negotiations on healthcare costs with the United Auto Workers. Last week, the union said it had no intention of revising its current labor contract to help the automaker lower medical expenses but would do what it could within the agreement to help lower costs.
GM has warned that its U.S. healthcare costs could grow to $5.8 billion this year. Making things look as bleak as possible would help GM persuade the union to pass on some of the company's healthcare costs to its hourly workers, analysts said.
Although healthcare costs are the company's principal long-term concern, getting its product mix right for the competitive U.S. market is the more immediate concern, he said.
Sounds like some corporations are chafing under the weight of health care costs. Now what to do, what to do...
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