Delphi – Consulting The Oracle

The filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last Saturday by Delphi, the No. 1 U.S. car-parts supplier, is making waves, both in the stockmarkets and in the news columns. Stephen Roach had a whole GEF post devoted to the issue yesterday. This morning it is the turn of the FT, which has a (subscription only) piece that cites Delphi CEO Steve Miller to the effect that the pension liability conflicts which lie behind the bankruptcy are only a foretaste of ‘the intergenerational warfare’ that is to come:

The bankruptcy of Delphi, a car parts maker employing 180,000 people worldwide, marked a “flash point” between the interests of current and former workers, its chief executive said on Monday.

Warning of “hard choices ahead”, Steve Miller, who previously managed US steel and airline bankruptcies, said the conflict offered a foretaste of an “inter-generational warfare” facing much of the industrialised world.

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About Edward Hugh

Edward 'the bonobo is a Catalan economist of British extraction. After being born, brought-up and educated in the United Kingdom, Edward subsequently settled in Barcelona where he has now lived for over 15 years. As a consequence Edward considers himself to be "Catalan by adoption". He has also to some extent been "adopted by Catalonia", since throughout the current economic crisis he has been a constant voice on TV, radio and in the press arguing in favor of the need for some kind of internal devaluation if Spain wants to stay inside the Euro. By inclination he is a macro economist, but his obsession with trying to understand the economic impact of demographic changes has often taken him far from home, off and away from the more tranquil and placid pastures of the dismal science, into the bracken and thicket of demography, anthropology, biology, sociology and systems theory. All of which has lead him to ask himself whether Thomas Wolfe was not in fact right when he asserted that the fact of the matter is "you can never go home again".