GM, UAW in talks over lump-sum offer

GM workers
GM workers assembling a truck engine

General Motors Co. is in discussions with the United Auto Workers union on offering lump-sum pension payments, confirmed GM spokesman Dave Roman.

Mr. Roman did not have any further information. He confirmed GM CEO and Chairman Dan Akerson made a comment on the discussions at a briefing with reporters at the GM Renaissance Center Wednesday morning.

GM announced on June 1 it would offer 42,000 salaried retirees a lump-sum payment. Another 76,000 salaried retirees, along with those who declined the lump sum, will receive annuity payments from Prudential as part of a transaction completed late last year that eliminated about $29 billion in pension liability.

About 30% of eligible salaried retirees accepted the automaker's lump-sum pension offer, GM announced in November. It could not be determined if the discussions with the UAW involve retirees or former employees who are vested.

UAW spokeswoman Michele Martin did not return a call.

The General Motors Hourly-Rate Employees Pension Plan, Detroit, had $60.4 billion in assets as of Sept. 30, 2011.