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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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Sergio Marchionne: Chrysler expects to earn a $3B operating profit in 2012

Dec. 14, 2011

Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said Chrysler expects to earn a 2012 operating profit of $3 billion, he said today at an event marking the production launch of the new Fiat Panda in Pomigliano, Italy.

Marchionne also said Fiat Group, which owns 53.5% of Chrysler expects to post a 2012 trading profit of between 1.6 billion and 2.0 billion euros ($2.1 billion to $2.6 billion).

Fiat said Tuesday it had reached an agreement with all but one of its unions on a new labor contract covering its factories in Italy that includes work rules that the automaker expects will lead to improved productivity and reduced absenteeism. The contract will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2012.

Metalworkers union FIOM, Italy's biggest, walked out of the negotiations last week and did not therefore sign the agreement, which increases the number of shifts at Fiat plants and cuts the length of breaks workers are entitled to.

Fiat last month decided to scrap a national labor contract at its factories, because, company officials said it put the Fiat at a competitive disadvantage on the international stage, to replace them with more flexible agreements.

Marchionne, who has said all five Fiat assembly plants in Italy are losing money. Italian trade unions have expressed concern that Fiat could move its operations away from Italy.

Fiat expects new car sales in Italy to fall to about 1.7 million in 2012, as the nation’s government grapples with a dire debt crisis that will force deep cuts in government spending that almost certainly will drive up unemployment in the near term. In 2007 Italians bought about 2.5 million vehicles.

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