Car, truck sales continue to riseSales of domestically...

BUSINESS DIGEST

September 04, 1993

Car, truck sales continue to rise

Sales of domestically built cars and light trucks continued their steady rise in late August, gaining 19.7 percent from the corresponding period last year, when sales were sluggish. Many dealers reported that low inventories of 1993 models -- rather than less consumer interest -- kept them from selling even more vehicles.

In late August, sales of domestically built cars rose 17.8 percent, while sales of light trucks rose 22.4 percent. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of car sales was 6.8 million for the Aug. 21-31 period.

GM will act to close plant

General Motors Corp. said it will proceed with plans to close its Willow Run car assembly plant in Ypsilanti, Mich., after the Michigan Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal seeking to keep the 51-year-old factory open.

The court's refusal ends a 17-month fight by Washtenaw County and Ypsilanti Township to keep the Willow Run factory open. The decision means that the plant's 2,150 remaining employees who have been on temporary layoff since July will lose their jobs.

GTE phone unit to cut 2,600 jobs

GTE Corp. said its GTE Telephone Operations unit will cut 2,600 positions in the United States in an effort to reduce costs and become more competitive.

The telephone operations unit is the largest segment of GTE, which is headquartered in Stamford, Conn.

Volkswagen executive backs Lopez

The supervisory-board chairman of Volkswagen AG indicated his support yesterday for the company's embattled chief of production, Jose Ignacio Lopez de Arriortua, saying the board had found no evidence that the Spanish executive was guilty of industrial espionage.

Southwest Airlines to settle suit

Southwest Airlines Co. said yesterday that it has agreed to pay $1.25 million to settle a class-action suit that accused the carrier of discriminating against older pilots.

Farmers win case against Du Pont

An Arkansas federal court jury yesterday awarded $10.65 million in damages to 31 farmers who had sued Du Pont Co. over allegations its controversial fungicide Benlate DF had damaged their crops.

The Wilmington, Del.-based chemical company said it would appeal the case.

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