Auto Industry Bad & Good

Auto Industry Bad & Good-
THE BAD: ry/Business/home GM halves dividend, cuts executive pay
Globe and Mail Update
General Motors Corp. said Tuesday it is slashing its quarterly dividend in half and cutting the salaries of its senior executive team as the world's largest auto maker struggles with billions of dollars in losses.
The dividend cut will reduce GM's yearly cash payout by about $565-million (U.S.). The auto maker also plans to cut health benefits for salaried retirees and evaluate ways to restructure its pension plan for salaried U.S. workers.
GM shares slipped 7 cents to $23.27 in early trading in New York.
The GM actions follow a restructuring that includes plant closings and the elimination of 30,000 jobs
THE GOOD: ry/?queryToyota revs up plans for Ontario plant To boost output and jobs significantly
Toyota Motor Corp. is expected to announce today a 50-per-cent boost in production at its new plant in Woodstock, Ont., and an increase in initial jobs to 2,000 from 1,300 -- even before cement for the factory has been poured.
The plant will start operating in 2008 with a plan to produce 150,000 vehicles annually, up from the original startup figure of 100,000 when Toyota announced the $800-million investment last June.

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