Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) said Tuesday that it will cut several hundred jobs in the United Kingdom, Germany and elsewhere in Europe due to declining demand in the region. Ford warned that its European operations could suffer losses of $1 billion this year.
The Big Three auto maker also said it does not yet know the final number of workers in Europe that will be laid off. The company will offer voluntary buyouts for salaried staff and cut jobs for some outsourced services.
Stephen Odell, Ford's European chief executive, said earlier this month that Europe offered tremendous growth potential in the long term. But Ford sales in the region fell almost 10% during the first half of 2012, to its lowest level in 17 years. The company also has been hit by an influx of cheaper imports from South Korea after Europe lowered its tariffs on Korean vehicles last year.
In addition to the staff cuts, Ford is studying plant closures and other cost-cutting measures. But closing factories in Germany is politically difficult. The carmaker is trying to persuade the unions and national politicians in Belgium, Germany, Spain and the U.K. to agree to structural changes.
Shares of Ford dropped 1.7% to $9.91 after the opening bell. The 52-week range is $8.82 to $13.05.
Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Autos, International Markets Tagged: F