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FCA, UAW back at table as strike threat looms

The last time the UAW called a strike against Detroit automakers was in 2007 at Chrysler and GM.

DETROIT (Reuters) -- As the threat of a strike hangs over them, negotiators from Fiat Chrysler and the UAW continued to meet today, a union spokesman said.

The union on Tuesday called for a strike against Fiat Chrysler's U.S. operations at 11:59 p.m. EDT unless a new agreement on a four-year contract is reached or there is movement toward one.

It was unclear whether a potential strike would be against all FCA's U.S. factories or against strategic plants, such as the automaker’s three transmission factories and a neighboring casting plant in and near Kokomo, Ind.

Automotive News first learned of the notices from a worker at the Kokomo complex, where the notification letter from the union to the company was posted on Tuesday.

The spokesman would not offer details of the talks including whether the company was willing to sweeten the deal it offered the UAW that was approved Sept. 18 by the union leaders but rejected last week by 65 percent of its rank-and-file Fiat Chrysler membership.

The company's U.S. production plants are concentrated in the Midwest, in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio.

The last time the UAW called a strike against Detroit automakers was in 2007 at Chrysler and General Motors.

General Motors and Chrysler were prohibited from striking until this year as part of the 2009 agreement with the U.S. government that likely saved the companies from extinction.

An auto industry analyst, using an estimated profit per vehicle of about $1,100 in the first half of the year, estimated that Fiat Chrysler could lose $40 million of operating profit and at least $1 billion of revenue weekly in a strike of all its U.S. production plants.

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