Thursday, October 22, 2015

Financial Times Journalists Authorize Strike Action Over Pensions

Just as long as the pension fund isn't loaded up with Pearson stock:
PSO Pearson plc daily Stock Chart
Down big yesterday but really, just continuing a trend.

From The Press Gazette, Oct. 21
:FT journalists commence strike ballot in protest at new owner Nikkei's £4m pensions scheme 'robbery' 
Journalists at the Financial Times voted unanimously today to begin a ballot for industrial action.
The move follows plans by new owner Nikkei to end the final salary pension scheme. The new pension arrangements will save the company at least £4m a year, according to the National Union of Journalists. 
Nikkei has agreed to pay Pearson £844m for the Financial Times Group and is due to complete the purchase next month. 
According to the NUJ, around 150 FT journalists met today and unanimously agreed the following motion: 
"The FT chapel condemns Nikkei and FT managers for failing to honour promises made to maintain fair and equivalent terms of employment in the wake of the takeover.
"Proposals to take at least £4m a year from funds allocated to our pensions and use the money to pay rent and admin costs amount to no less than robbery.
"In light of the lack of compromise on this and the likelihood that the takeover will be complete by the end of November, we instruct NUJ reps to begin the process of balloting for industrial action. 
"NUJ negotiators should insist as a minimum requirement that total FT contributions to employee pensions should remain the same under Nikkei as they are now.
"The FT chapel congratulates the pensions reps for their work so far in clarifying and working to improve the terms proposed for new pension schemes in the face of an absurdly short time frame.  
"We urge reps to call on Nikkei and Pearson to find an alternative to management proposals to put FT staff into auto-enrolment pensions or into an unresolved DC scheme should negotiations not be complete when the deal is finalised." 
Earlier today the FT issued the following statement: "1. We stand by the statement that it is categorically untrue that the new pension plan is being designed to cut costs....MORE

The Financial Times denies that the pension cuts will be used to pay rent on the FT Building. Seriously.

For the striking scribes, if you are going with the standard "2, 4, 6, 8..." chant may I suggest something along the lines of "Two, Four, Six, Eight...something, something...Fourth Estate".