Big 3 weigh health care fund

Big 3 weigh health care fund
General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Co. and DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler
may create an independent health insurance fund to trim their combined $114 billion in future retiree health care obligations, five people with direct knowledge of the talks said.
The U.S. automakers each would contribute to the fund to pay for health care benefits of United Auto Workers retirees. The talks are preliminary, so the fund's size and how much each would contribute haven't been determined, the people said.
The companies are trying to deal with health care costs GM CEO Rick Wagoner says cost them a combined $12 billion in 2006. The costs contributed to losses at the automakers, while Japanese rivals posted record profits.

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