In a move timed to coincide with the inauguration of a new U.S. President, General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) has announced significant layoffs in two states that helped send Donald Trump to the White House.
GM has announced that it will eliminate a third shift at its Lansing, Michigan, plant and fire 810 hourly workers and 20 salaried staff. The Lansing plant makes Chevy Camaros and the Cadillac ATS and CTS models. The effective date is January 16, just 4 days before the inauguration of President Trump.
The company will also fire 1,202 hourly workers and 43 salaried staff at its Chevrolet Cruze plant in Lordstown, Ohio. The company is also eliminating a third shift at the Lordstown plant.
GM also said it plans to invest $900 million to prepare the Lansing plant, its Toledo Operations plant in Ohio, and its Bedford, Indiana metal casting plant. The company plans to spend $668 million on the Toledo plant, $211 million at the Lansing facility, and $37 million in Indiana. The investments are said to retain 784 jobs at the three locations for work on undisclosed new products according a report at Automotive News. No new jobs will be created as a result of the investments.
New U.S. car sales are down 0.3% year over year through October and passenger cars have been particularly hard hit, with sales down nearly 10%. GM’s car sales were reported down 7.5% at the end of last month.
Automotive News also reported that a GM spokesman said the decision relates to the carmaker’s shift toward light trucks and was not connected to Tuesday’s election.
Maybe GM didn’t make the connection, but the more than 2,000 workers who are losing their jobs might see matters differently.
Shares of GM traded down more than 4% in the mid-afternoon Wednesday at $30.40 in a 52-week range of $26.69 to $36.88.