Traverse City Record-Eagle

Business

June 5, 2014

Business in Brief: 06/05/2014

GM to release attorney’s recall report today

DETROIT — General Motors plans to release the results of an outside attorney’s investigation into its mishandled recall of small cars on Thursday morning.

The company says it is inviting reporters to a 9 a.m. event at its technical center in the Detroit suburb of Warren.

CEO Mary Barra will lead a worldwide employee meeting to discuss the report and hold a news conference afterward. In the afternoon, the company will update industry analysts in a conference call hosted by Barra.

GM has hired former U.S. Attorney Anton Valukas to investigate why it took the company more than 10 years to recall about 2.6 million small cars with faulty ignition switches. The company says the problem has caused at least 13 deaths, but trial lawyers suing GM say the toll is at least 60.

Documents show engineers in the company knew about the problem as early as 2001, yet GM didn’t start recalling cars such as the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion until February of this year.

Barra has promised that Valukas’ investigation will be “unvarnished” and that she will take action on his recommendations.

GM has also hired attorney Kenneth Feinberg to negotiate compensation for families of crash victims. Feinberg told The Associated Press last week that he hasn’t settled any cases and won’t until GM decides on its options. He said the work is taking longer than he initially expected.

Shares of GM have been higher since trading opened. They were up $1.48, or 4.2 percent, to $36.74 in midday trading Wednesday.

Help planned for companies facing military cuts

ANN ARBOR — A group of universities representing Michigan, Ohio and Indiana is getting nearly $2.5 million to help small- and medium-size companies affected by military spending cuts.

The University of Michigan’s Institute for Research on Labor, Employment, and the Economy has been awarded the grant in partnership with Ohio State University and Purdue University. It’s for a regional Defense Manufacturing Assistance Program.

The federal funds announced Wednesday are from the Office of Economic Adjustment. The money is part of a project that will assist companies in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio in finding new markets, supporting business stabilization and implementing diversification strategies.

The Defense Department says defense manufacturers in the three states have announced more than 3,900 layoffs since 2012.

 

 

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