Harley-Davidson lays off staff, cuts salaries, amid coronavirus outbreak



FILE PHOTO: The logo of U.S. motorcycle company Harley-Davidson is seen on one of their models at a shop in Paris, France, August 16, 2018. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

April 15, 2020

(Reuters) – Harley-Davidson Inc <HOG.N> said on Wednesday it had temporarily laid off most of its global production employees and implemented salary cuts in a bid to lower costs as the coronavirus pandemic has hurt its business.

The announcement comes weeks after the motorcycle maker withdrew its earnings forecast for this year, saying pandemic-induced disruptions could dent its ability to supply and sell motorcycles.

Harley’s shares were down 6.9% at $18.02 in afternoon trading.

As part of the cost cuts, its chief executive officer and board of directors will forgo their salaries, the company said, though it didn’t say for how long.

Salaries of the executive leadership would be cut by 30%, while most other salaried employees would see a reduction of between 10%-20% in their paychecks.

Outside the United States, it will take similar actions.

Harley said salary reductions will be reassessed at the end of the second quarter.

The company said it will also not hand out merit increases for 2020 and will freeze hiring.

(Reporting by Rajesh Kumar Singh; Editing by Bernadette Baum)





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