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7. Since January 1950, companies with escalator and annual improvement clauses have received adjustments as indicated by the following.
Number of adjustments
Total net increase per
9 times 8 times. 3 times.
8. The following wage increases since March 1946 have been received by steel. workers.
9. There have been no fringe adjustments in the steel industry since 1947 (except for a pension plan).
10. WSB claims that their recommendations are in line with fringe benefits prevailing in other important industries. The immediate adjustments totaled 5.1 cents on an annual basis with 3.6 cents additional effective January 1953 to cover 144 premium pay for Sundays. 11. The benefits recommended by WSB included:
(1) 6 holidays with pay (none previously).
(5) Beginning in January 1953, Sunday work would get time and one quarter (straight time now). 12. To recapitulate:
Comparison of fringe benefit demands with WSB recommendations
Current fringe practices
Farm equipment (Inter
Electrical equipment (General Electric)
Rubber (U. S. Rubber)
Shift differentials: Present 4 cents afternoon, 6 cents Second shift 5 percent; 7 cents per hour for hours Second shift, 10 percent; Second shift, 10 percent; 6 cents an hour for work night.
third shift, 742 per- worked between 6 p. third shift, 10 percent third shift, 10 percent. performed between 6 WSB recom- 6 cents afternoon, 9 cents cent (average hourly m, and 6 a. m.
(average hourly earn:
p. m. and 6 8. m. (3
cents in cases of other
leading rubber com
No pay for holidays not 6 paid holidays; double 8 paid holidays; triple 6 paid holidays; double 7 paid holidays; double 6 paid holidays; double
worked; time and one- time when worked. time for holidays time when worked. time when worked. time when worked.
1 year of service, 1 week; 1 year of service, 1 week; 1 year of service, 1 week; 1 year of service, 1 week; 1 year of service, 1 week; 1 year of service, 1 week;
years, 2 weeks; 15 years, 3 weeks (agree- years, 3 weeks.
years, 3 weeks.
ment for 3 weeks after mended. service, 3 weeks.
15 years of service now
pending before WSB). Saturday and Sun
No premium payment All employees receive Double time for Sun- Time and one-half for Noncontinuous opera- | Double time for Sunday.
for Saturday and Sun- time and one-half for day, except for workers sixth day; double timo tions, time and oneday work as such; time sixth day worked; whose work regularly for seventh day; time hall for Saturday work and one-half payment noncontinuous opera- falls on Sunday.
and one-half for Sun. and double time for is made for hours tions employees re
day work as such. Sunday work; conworked in excess of 8 ceive double time for
tinuous operations, in a day, 40 in a pay. seventh consecutive
time and one-half for roll week and work on day worked in calen
work on employees'
Saturday or Sunday,
double time when
work on seventh day WSB recom- Time and a quarter pay. Ford
falls on employees' mended. ment for Sunday work
Saturday or Sunday. as such (effective January 1953).
Meat packing (Swift)
Time and one-half for
Saturday work in ex-
1 Add another .3 cents in the case of United Steel and Republic Steel for the North-South differential.
ESTIMATED COST OF WSB RECOMMENDATIONS OPS agrees with steel companies' estimate that the recommended wage increases and other employee benefits would increase the direct wage costs to approximately 30 cents per man hour, when payroll taxes, pension costs and other costs are included
Direct increase in em
ployment costs per employee hour
Cost of Increase
General increase in wage rates.
6 paid holidays (including double time for holidays worked).
Total direct cost per employee..-
1 Effective July 1, 1952.
THE STEEL COMPANIES' POSITION
13. The steel companies contend that WSB recommendations ignore the fact that "the steelworkers are among the highest paid employees in the American industry;that as recently as 1949 a public panel found the steelworkers suffered no wage inequities in comparison with workers in other industries and that, in the past several years the steelworkers' earnings have increased substantially more than the cost of living."
14. They agree that some of the fringe recommendations are not inconsistent with WSB policy, but are superimposed upon an arbitrary and excessive wage increase; that the most unjustifiable and unstabilizing proposal is for the ly premium pay for time worked on Sundays.
15. They claim that as a result of the Board's action the Government weight has been thrown behind the union's drive for union shop.
16. The steel companies presented six principal reasons to WSB why the present price and profits will not support the recommended wage and fringe increases-stated briefly these are:
(1) Profits in 1951 declined 13 percent for the 49 leading steel companies (reporting to American Iron and Steel Institute) responsible for 92 percent of the country's production,
(2) The 1951 profits of 5.7 cents on the sales dollar are at a record low for a period of peak-capacity operations; that they are actually inadequate for supporting the huge expansion requested by the Government, and for paying the dividends that will attract new investment.
(3) Steel's profit rates of 12.3 percent on total net assets in 1951 was extraordinarily low-17 percent less than the national manufacturing average in 1951, according to recent National City Bank comparisons.
(4) Steel profit reports—as with all corporations- now overstate the industry's real earnings, because depreciation allowances permitted by Government are inadequate under today's inflation to cover replacement costs; that replacement costs have risen from 200 to 300 percent over prewar averages; that if depreciation were to be charged on the base of today's replacement values, it would be found that profits in 1951 were at least $180 millions lower than the amounts reported—or 30 percent below the reported total.
(5) Steel's 1951 profits were not only 13 percent under those of 1950; but were still on the decline during 1951; they were earned at a lower rate in the second half of the year; that there was also a decrease in dividends to stockholders; that since taxes in 1952 will be higher than in 1951, then with the same volume of sales and with costs otherwise unchanged, the 1952 decline in profits can be even greater than last year's.
(6) Total 1951 profits for the entire industry ran to little more than $700 millions, on the basis of preliminary estimates. For purposes of comparison: this profit of the whole industry amounts to less than the additional billiondollar wage costs (on basis $12 per ton) proposed by Government and union.
THE UNION'S POSITION 17. The union claims that 16 cents an hour would have been required on January 1, 1952, to catch up with the increase in cost of living since their December 1950 contract was negotiated. | 18. They contend that other industries have higher average hourly rates; that the major ones have received wage increases since December 1950.
19. The union argues that the recommendations do not adequately compensate for increased productivity; that this would justify an additional wage increase of 5 cents per hour for each year since 1950.
20. That the meager consideration of one and one-quarter premium pay for Sunday work is a far cry from the double time for Sunday work and time and one-half for Saturday work now generally enjoyed by American workers.
21. The union contends that the Board's action in recommending the union shop only extends the same kind of protection accorded unions in other industries. Comparison of steel companies' offer 1 with recommendations of the Wage Stabilization
9 cents. 5. Vacations...
3 weeks after 15 years' service.. 3 weeks after 15 years' service. 6. Holidays.
6 at straight time when not 6 at straight time when not worked;
worked; 6 at double time 6 at double time when worked.
when worked. 7. Effective date of fringe ad Effective date of new agreement. Effective first full payroll period justments in 3, 4, 5, and 6
following Mar. 20, the date of above.
Board's recommendations, or as
otherwise agreed. 8. Premium pay for Sunday. None...
Time and one-quarter for work per
formed on Sunday to be effective
Jan. 1, 1952. 9. Union security.-Maintenance of membership... Form and conditions of union shop
provision to be determined in negotiations. General Motors provision suggested as possibility for
mutual agreement. 10. Contract issues.
To be settled by mutual agree- To be settled by mutual agreement.
COMPARISON OF STEEL EARNINGS WITH LIVING Costs AND OTHER INDUSTRIES
1. Steel companies claim the hourly earnings of steelworkers has increased higher than the cost of living. They submitted the following data.
2. Steel companies submitted the following tables in further contention of their claim:
3. Steel companies claim that the hourly rate of steelworkers is above the average of other industries.
PERMISSIBLE WAGE INCREASES UNDER WSB REGULATIONS Nos. 6 AND 8
THE STEEL COMPANIES' CONTENTION Under regulation No. 6 (general 10 percent “catch up" formula): Per hour
Steelworkers' straight-time wages on base date (January 1950). $1. 638 10 percent "catch up" permitted.-
164 December 1950 wage increase granted.
. 16 Balance due steelworkers, Dec. 1, 1951..
004 Under regulation No. 8 (wage increases permitted to offset higher living costs after January 15, 1951): Steelworkers' current straight-time wage.
1. 81 Permitted wage increase under old cost of living index January 15,
1951, to January 15, 1952 (1.81 X 4.75 percent). Balance due under regulation No. 6..
. 004 Total steelworkers' wage increase permitted...