November 18, 2008 by Rick Rottman
How much does an American auto worker make?
With all the talk of a possible government handout for the American auto industry, I started to wonder how much an American auto worker who is a member of the UAW union makes? From CNN Money:
The current veteran UAW member at GM today has an average base wage of $28.12 an hour, but the cost of benefits, including pension and future retiree health care costs, nearly triples the cost to GM to $78.21, according to the Center for Automotive Research.
By comparison, new hires will be paid between $14 and $16.23 an hour. And even as they start to accumulate raises tied to seniority, the far less lucrative benefit package will limit GM’s cost for those employees to $25.65 an hour.
So not only do they make a substantial amount of money for doing basically unskilled factory work, they receive a substantial benefits package including a pension. I didn’t even know people still got pensions. I cannot imagine making $28 an hour to work on an assembly line and not have to put one single penny of that money into a 401K for my retirement.
It must be nice.