GM: Strikes will cost it $2B pretax in 2Q

American Axle said Friday it expects production to resume next week after United Auto Workers members overwhelmingly approved a new contract that contains steep pay cuts and other concessions. The vote was finalized Thursday.

"This new contract provides AAM and its UAW-represented work force the opportunity to transition through a most difficult period of structural change in the domestic automotive industry," American Axle Chairman and CEO Richard Dauch said in a statement.

American Axle shares fell 81 cents, or 4.2%, to $18.44 Friday.

About 3,650 UAW members went on strike Feb. 26 over American Axle's demand for lower wages to match its U.S. competitors. American Axle makes axles, drive shafts and stabilizer bars, mainly for GM's pickups and large SUVs. GM accounts for 80% of business at American Axle, which was formed from parts plants sold by GM in 1994.

"Our members have had to make some tough decisions for themselves and their families and have done so with careful deliberation," UAW President Ron Gettelfinger said in a statement.

The strike forced GM to temporarily close or cut production at more than 30 factories. It also caused thousands of layoffs at GM and other auto parts suppliers.

GM spokesman Dan Flores said Friday the automaker has a plan to bring its idled factories back on line, but didn't release details.

"We want to get our operations back to normal as soon as we can," he said.

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