GM Match Beefed Up Again

September 30, 2002 ( - General Motors Corp. will increase the twice-slashed 401(k) match for nearly 45,000 US salaried employees, company officials said, according to news reports.

Employees will receive details next month, spokesman Tom Wickham told the Associated Press.


The company did not say how much it would increase its match in the employee retirement savings program or when the change would take effect, an AP news report said.

GM now matches $0.20 for every dollar an employee contributes up to 6% of his or her salary, Wickham said.

The move comes after the company twice cut its match since March 2001. First, the match fell from $0.80 to $0.60. And then in January, it went from $0.60 to $0.20 (See   Company Match Hits the Skids at GM ).

“It’s just general confidence in our performance,” Wickham told the AP. “The economics were such that we could award this to the employees.”

GM’s profit more than doubled to $1.3 billion in the second quarter this year. The company cited improved sales, higher North American production, and the benefits of cost-cutting efforts.

Most hourly auto workers have 401(k) plans they can contribute to, but do not receive a matching portion from the employer. For white-collar autoworkers, matching 401(k) plans are standard.

GM was hardly the only company to try for corporate savings by slashing or eliminating a retirement plan match. Recently, automotive companies have cut back their programs. Ford Motor Co., for instance, eliminated matches for employees in January while other firms made similar moves (See Employers Strike the Match ).

GM also dropped its profit sharing, incentives, and variable pay programs as cost-sharing efforts (See   GM Drops Profit Sharing, Incentives, Variable Pay ).