Ford Suspends North American Production Beyond March 30

Ford Motor suspended North American output beyond March 30, saying the coronavirus keeps workers at home, making production difficult.
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Ford Motor  (F) - Get Report said it no longer planned to restart auto production March 30 at its plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

All the Big Three U.S. automakers said last week that they were shuttering their North American plants until March 30 to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

“In light of various governments’ orders to stay and work from home, Ford is not planning to restart our plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico on Monday, March 30, as originally hoped,” Kumar Galhotra, president of the Dearborn, Mich., company’s North America division, said in a statement.

“We are assessing various options and working with union leaders – including the United Auto Workers and Unifor – on the optimal timing for resuming vehicle production, keeping the well-being of our workforce top of mind.”

The UAW had pushed for the original closure to protect its workers.

GM  (GM) - Get Report and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles  (FCAU) - Get Report haven’t announced any changes in their shutdown schedules. 

“As we announced last week, the suspension will last until at least March 30,” David Barnas, a GM spokesman, told CNBC. “Production status will be reevaluated week-to-week after that.”

Fiat Chrysler wasn’t immediately available for comment.

The coronavirus pandemic has caused plant closures that will reduce global auto production by more than 1.4 million vehicles this year, according to research firm IHS Markit.

At last check, Ford shares traded at $4.80, up 20%, compared with the S&P 500's rise of 7.06%. 

For the 12 months through Monday, Ford shares fell 43%, GM 42% and Fiat Chrysler 51%. The S&P 500 index slid 14%.