Erik Schelzig/APWorkers assemble a Volkswagen Passat at the German automaker's Chattanooga, Tenn., plant. DETROIT -- Volkswagen AG and the United Auto Workers said they are in talks about the U.S. union's bid to represent workers at the German carmaker's Tennessee plant, which would be a milestone in the UAW's long-running effort to organize foreign-owned auto plants. Volkswagen officials, in a letter distributed to workers at the Chattanooga, Tenn., plant Thursday night and Friday morning shifts, said worker representation at the plant can only be realized by joining with a U.S. trade union. "In the U.S., a works council can only be realized together with a trade union," Fischer's letter says. "This is the reason why Volkswagen has started a dialogue with the UAW in order to check the possibility of implementing an innovative model of employee representation for all employees." The letter to the 2,500 Chattanooga workers was signed by Frank Fischer, chief operating officer and manager of the plant, and Sebastian Patta, head of human resources in Chattanooga. UAW President Bob King has been trying without success thus far to organize foreign-owned, U.S.-based auto plants to bolster membership in the union, which has fallen from its peak in the late 1970s. The UAW has been working with the German union IG Metall to try to organize workers at the Volkswagen plant. King is open to what Fischer called "an innovative model" in order to gain acceptance by workers at foreign-owned auto plants, which are primarily in the U.S. South. "VW workers in Chattanooga have the unique opportunity to introduce this new model of labor relations to the United States, in partnership with the UAW," the UAW said in a statement Friday morning. "If Bob King can get his foot in the door at Chattanooga, even if it's just a works council, it's pretty significant," a former auto executive at a foreign automaker with U.S. plants, who wished to remain anonymous, said earlier this week. On Wednesday, during a call about Volkswagen's U.S. sales, Jonathan Browning, head of the company in the United States, said: "We've been very clear that that process has to run its course, that no management decision has been made and that it may or may not conclude with formal third-party representation." Browning also said that ultimately, the decision on whether to have third-party representation will be decided by Chattanooga's workers by a formal vote. There was no indication in the letter to workers when such a vote would be held. The UAW also confirmed that King met last Friday with VW executives and officials from the company's "global works council," which represents VW blue- and white-collar employees around the world. The UAW said last week's meeting, "focused on the appropriate paths, consistent with American law, for arriving at both Volkswagen recognition of UAW representation at its Chattanooga facility and establishment of a German-style works council." At VW plants, workers are represented by so-called works councils, which include laborers as well as executives who cooperate to determine issues ranging from company strategy to job conditions. They do not negotiate wages or benefits. Volkswagen has about 100 plants worldwide, and all of them except for the Chattanooga factory and the company's six plants joint venture plants in China have such a council, an expression of the company's belief in what it calls "co-determination." While the UAW, and VW in its letter to Chattanooga workers, say that a U.S. trade union must be allied with any group of workers at a foreign-owned company, some disagree. "Volkswagen workers can discuss their work with their employer without UAW unionization," Mark Mix, president of the anti-union National Right to Work Foundation, said in a statement Thursday. "The UAW's campaign of misrepresentation is meant only to misinform workers into thinking that they have no choice but to unionize," Mix said. The anti-union organization is based in Virginia.
By Michael Zak | AOL Autos
5 Best China Stocks For 2014: ChinaEdu Corporation(CEDU)
ChinaEdu Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides educational services to the online degree programs of universities in the People?s Republic of China. It also offers online tutoring services to primary and secondary school students; operates primary and secondary schools; and markets international English language curriculum programs to established learning institutions, as well as international polytechnic programs to vocational schools in China. The company?s online degree programs offer associate and bachelor?s degree programs, including accounting, marketing, finance, business administration, international business, law, civil engineering, education, computer science, literature, project management, marketing, and administrative management. These online degree programs primarily target working adults. Its services also include academic program development, technology services, enrollment marketing, recruiting, student support services, and finance operati ons. The company provides technical, recruiting, and other services for the online degree programs of 27 universities; and technology support services to 7 additional universities that are awaiting regulatory approval to launch their online degree programs. As of December 31, 2010, it served approximately 311,000 online degree programs students, as well as approximately 51,450 students in other businesses. ChinaEdu Corporation was founded in 1999 and is based in Beijing, the People?s Republic of China.
5 Best China Stocks For 2014: SmartHeat Inc.(HEAT)
SmartHeat Inc. manufactures, sells, and services plate heat exchangers (PHE) in the People?s Republic of China. It offers PHE units, which combine PHEs with various pumps, temperature sensors, and valves and automated control systems; heat meters for use in commercial and residential buildings; and spiral and tube heat exchangers. The company?s products are used in various applications that include energy conversion for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning; and industrial use in petroleum refining, petrochemicals, metallurgy, food and beverage, and chemical processing. SmartHeat sells PHE units under the brand name of Taiyu; and PHEs under the brand names of Taiyu and Sondex. It sells its products through sales force and a network of national distributors. The company is headquartered in Shenyang, the People?s Republic of China.
Top Biotech Stocks For 2014: Bona Film Group Limited(BONA)
Bona Film Group Limited distributes films in the People?s Republic of China. It distributes films to movie theaters, as well as to non-theatrical distribution channels, including DVD and Blu-ray and other home video products; Internet and digital distribution; in-flight entertainment; and cable, satellite, and broadcast televisions. The company also invests in the production of Chinese and Hong Kong films in order to obtain the distribution rights for movie theaters and non-theatrical channels. In addition, Bona Film Group operates six movie theaters in five cities of the People?s Republic of China; operates a talent agency business that represents artists; and involves in film advertising and television production businesses. The company was founded in 2003 and is headquartered in Beijing, the People?s Republic of China.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Bona Film Group (Nasdaq: BONA ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.
- [By Bryan Murphy]
With just a quick glance at the chart, Bona Film Group Ltd (NASDAQ:BONA) doesn't look like anything other than an erratic mess. When you take a step back and take a look at the longer-term chart of BONA, however, you can see the last several weeks have ushered in a major bullish change of direction for the stock... meaning now's a great time to start wading into a position.
5 Best China Stocks For 2014: Trina Solar Limited(TSL)
Trina Solar Limited, through its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and sells photovoltaic (PV) modules worldwide. The company offers monocrystalline PV modules ranging from 165 watts to 185 watts in power output; and multicrystalline PV modules ranging from 215 watts to 240 watts in power output that provide electric power for residential, commercial, industrial, and other applications. It also involves in the design and production of various PV modules, such as colored modules for architectural applications and larger sized modules for utility grid applications based on customers? and end-users? specifications. Trina Solar Limited sells and markets its products primarily to distributors, wholesalers, power plant developers and operators, and PV system integrators. The company was founded in 1997 and is based in Changzhou, the People?s Republic of China.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Lauren Pollock]
Trina Solar Ltd.(TSL) swung to a surprise third-quarter profit after better than expected demand in China drove up company shipments and led to strong revenue growth. American depositary shares surged 11% to $18.04 premarket.
- [By Paul Ausick]
DJIA stocks on the move: Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. (NYSE: LGF) hit a new 52-week high of $35.13 on Wednesday. Trina Solar Ltd. (NASDAQ: TSL) rose more than 15% after posting better than expected earnings on Tuesday, Aeropostale Inc. (NYSE: ARO) put up a new 52-week low of $11.40, and another teen retailer, and American Eagle Outfitter Inc. (NYSE: AEO) also put up a new low of $14.33.
5 Best China Stocks For 2014: Top Image Systems Ltd.(TISA)
Top Image Systems Ltd. provides enterprise solutions for managing and validating content entering organizations from various sources. It develops and markets automated data capture solutions for managing and validating content gathered from customers, trading partners, and employees. The company?s solutions deliver digital content to the applications that drive an enterprise by using technologies, such as wireless communications, servers, form processing, and information recognition systems. It offers eFLOW Unified Content Platform that provides the common architectural infrastructure for its solutions. The company also provides Smart, an automated classification solution, which is the eFLOW plug-in for unstructured content providing single point of entry for information entering the organization; and Freedom, the eFLOW plug-in for semi-structured content that enables customers to identify and capture critical data from semi-structured documents, such as invoices, purchase orders, shipping notes, and checks. In addition, it offers Integra, the eFLOW plug-in for structured content, which provides a solution for data capture, validation, and delivery from structured predefined forms; eFLOW Ability, an integrated module interfacing with SAP systems for automated parking, approval, and posting of invoices and other document within SAP systems; and eFLOW Invoice Reader, an invoice capture and approval solution, which could be deployed and integrated in enterprise accounting environment, such as SAP, Oracle, and other financial systems. Top Image Systems Ltd. sells its products through a network of value-added distributors, systems integrators, original equipment manufacturers, and partners in approximately 40 countries worldwide. It has strategic partnership with SQN Banking Systems (SQN) to incorporate SQN's fraud detection solutions with its eFLOW Banking Platform in the Asia Pacific market. The company was founded in 1991 and is headquartered i n Ramat Gan, Israel.