OSLO (Reuters) – Norwegian oil workers could end their 10-day strike later on Friday if a set of new proposals from the oil industry proves satisfactory, the head of the Lederne trade union told Reuters.

Oil firms and union officials were meeting on Friday with a state-appointed mediator to try to end the strike, which threatens to cut output from western Europe’s biggest oil and gas producer by some 25%.

The Norwegian Oil and Gas Association (NOG), which is leading negotiations on behalf of companies, was not immediately available for comment.

Six offshore fields shut on Monday and a further seven are scheduled to halt operations in the coming days. The oil and gas outage is set to grow to 966,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed) by Oct. 14, according to the NOG.

“We are getting a new proposal from the NOG, and I hope that we can have a deal today,” Lederne leader Audun Ingvartsen told Reuters.

He did not disclose the contents of the proposal, which he said would take some time to review.

Lederne wants to match the pay and conditions of workers at onshore remote control rooms with offshore workers, as well as higher wage rises this year than proposed by oil companies.

Friday’s meeting is the first with the state mediator since the strike was announced on Sept. 30, although informal talks have been taking place.

The strike has helped support oil prices this week, with benchmark Brent crude

rising sharply. At 1150 GMT, it was trading down, however, at $43.02.

Gas prices, which also rose earlier in the week, also traded lower.

Norwegian oil workers are among the highest paid in Europe but earn less than those in Australia or North America, a review of the latest available data shows.

If the

Kroger employees from across Southeast Texas gathered in front of the Dowlen Road store in Beaumont on Tuesday afternoon to urge public support for its contract negotiations with the company. The union seeks a return of pandemic hazard pay and a halt to potential changes to health care plans.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 455, which represents 28,000 members in parts of Houston, all of Southeast Texas and parts of Louisiana, has been organizing demonstrations at stores in its coverage region since late September as negotiations with Kroger have become more heated.

Labor groups have been calling for the return of hazard benefits that Kroger awarded employees in March, such as a $2 pay bump, since the company ended its “hero bonus” in June. Focus has now shifted to a proposed increase in hours before employees could qualify for health insurance.

The company has also proposed a change to the structure of the trustee system for its insurance plan that would remove union representatives, according to UFCW leadership.

Rosalie Lowe, a lead at the floral department at the Kroger store in Orange, said the end of hazard pay and fear about changes to health plans have not been good for the moral of workers interacting with the public every day during the pandemic.

“We feel kind of betrayed,” she said. “I used to love to go to work. Now, I can’t look forward to it knowing what we mean to the company.”

After Kroger reported in June that it had a 19.1% growth in sales in the first fiscal quarter of the year, due in part to a more than 90% increase in digital sales, Lowe said employees can only assume that the company is going forward with changes for additional profit.

The company has reported that it

OSLO (Reuters) – Norway’s Lederne labour union will expand its ongoing oil strike from Oct. 10 unless a wage bargain can be reached in the meantime, it said on Tuesday, confirming a statement from the country’s state-appointed wage mediator.

Six offshore oil and gas fields shut down on Monday as Lederne ramped up its strike, cutting output capacity by 8%, or around 330,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed), according to the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association (NOG).

The planned Oct. 10 escalation would hit four additional fields operated by Equinor

and ConocoPhillips

but it was too early to say how it would affect oil and gas output, a spokesman for the NOG said.

The dispute began on Sept. 30 when wage talks between Lederne and the NOG collapsed, but the first production outages only started on Oct. 5.

Lederne earlier on Tuesday sent a proposal for a solution to the NOG, but its terms were not met, it later said.

“We received a reply from the NOG to our proposal, but it was not specific enough, and we have decided to escalate the strike,” Lederne union chief Audun Ingvartsen told Reuters.

“I hope that the escalation could still be avoided if the NOG comes back with a better proposal,” he added.

An escalation of the strike would add 93 more workers to the 169 who are already part of the conflict, out of a total 1,003 offshore members represented by Lederne.

Equinor’s Oseberg South, Oseberg East and Kristin fields, as well as the ConocoPhillips-run Ekofisk Bravo/Kilo installation would be added to the strike, the NOG said.

The conflict gave a boost to global oil prices for a second straight day on Tuesday.

Gas supplies from Norway to the rest of Europe were recovering some lost ground on Tuesday,

Source: ForbesSource: Forbes

Union Pacific (UNP) reports earnings on October 22nd. Analysts expect revenue of $4.89 billion and EPS of $1.98. The revenue estimate implies a double-digit percentage decline in revenue. Investors should focus on the following key items.

Revenue Continues To Decline

The pandemic has practically shut down business activity. Falling business activity leads to falling revenue traffic and falling revenue for Union Pacific. For the first 38 weeks of 2020, combined U.S. rail traffic (carloads and intermodal units) fell 10.9% Y/Y. That portends a decline in revenue for Union Pacific.

Union Pacific Q2 revenue. Source: Shock Exchange

Last quarter, rail traffic and average selling price (“ASP”) fell 20% and 6%, respectively. Each of the company’s major product categories experienced revenue declines.

The Bulk segment included coal, grain, food, fertilizer, coal and renewables. Revenue from the segment declined 17% on a 15% decline in carloads and 2% decline in ASP. Coal was negatively impacted by lower natural gas prices and overall softness in the market. General Electric (GE) recently exited the coal power market due to unattractive economics, implying weakness in the market may not abate anytime soon. The pandemic negatively impacted shipments of food and refrigerated products.

The Industrial segment fell 23% on an 18% decline in volume and 6% decline in ASP. Low oil prices hurt energy revenue, while weak economic activity likely stymied industrial revenue. Meanwhile, the Premium segment fell as the pandemic hurt international intermodal revenue.

Total carloads fell 20% Y/Y, with each major product segment experiencing double-digit percentage declines.

Union Pacific Q2 2020 carloads. Source: Shock Exchange

The Premium segment, which included intermodal and automotive, experienced the largest decline in volume. Intermodal volume will likely track movements in global economic activity. Automotive could face more headwinds if consumers shun big ticket items amid the pandemic. Industrial could also face headwinds until the economy fully reopens.

The company’s blended ASP fell

JACKSON COUNTY, MI – Hail, lightening and rain hasn’t stopped employees on strike at manufacturers in Jackson and Calhoun counties, who are asking to keep their pension and days off for doctor visits.

Nineteen employees at Miller Tool & Die in Jackson have been on strike since Sept. 17, and 35 employees at Albion Casters have been on strike since Sept. 25. Striking workers are all part of International Association of Machinists Local 435.

Both factories have employees outside 24/7, through rain, hail, wind and low overnight temperatures. It’s the first strike in more than 28 years for both.

“It’s been cold, and it’s been wet,” Local 435 President Jamie Miller said Friday, Oct. 2. Miller is an employee at Miller Tool & Die and has no affiliation with the company owners.

Employees go on strike at Jackson factory: ‘We want our pension’

Employees at Albion Casters, 800 N. Clark St., worked throughout the shutdown at the start of the coronavirus pandemic because they were deemed essential workers, employee Benjamin Speer said. They received a $2-an-hour hazard pay raise until July, but it’s unclear why that stopped since the pandemic is ongoing, Speer said.

“After being told we were critical, essential workers, it was a kick in the gut,” employee Don Collins said.

During negotiations, Albion Casters owner, Colson Group USA, wanted to cut the number of unpaid days for doctor’s visits from four to two and mandate overtime on Saturdays and possibly holidays, Speer said. That would mean employees work 56 hours a week instead of 48.

Colson Group USA did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Reducing the number of unpaid days employees can take for doctor’s visits doesn’t make sense, especially because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Collins said. He said management told employees they needed to