St. Louis-based Spartan Light Metal Products is reducing the size of its workforce with a round of layoffs it attributes to “overall weakness in the U.S. economy, higher gasoline prices and lower consumer spending have caused Spartan's customers to make dramatic changes in their order patterns.” The company began laying off hourly and salaried workers as of August 1.
An earlier round of layoffs at a Spartan Light Metal plant in Mexico, MO, affected 30 workers in June. At that time, the company attributed the situation to Ford Motor Co. scaling back is order for parts for F-150 pickup trucks. Ford is understood to be one of the plant’s largest customers.
In the current situation, Spartan’s statement indicates it expects “these dramatic changes to continue through 2008. Although we have a diversified customer base within the automotive and commercial sectors, these broader economic trends continue to affect sales volumes across all customers. As a result we are 're-sizing' our workforce to match our employment needs with the expected lower sales volumes of our customers."
The workforce reduction is being implemented companywide.
Spartan Light Metal manufactures aluminum and magnesium diecastings for automotive powertrains at plants in Sparta, IL, Mexico, MO, St. Louis, Detroit and Tokyo. In addition to diecasting, it offers heat treatment, finishing, machining, sealing systems, fasteners, and assembly.
Spartan continues to be a strong and valued supplier to its customers through its engineering and manufacturing expertise and financial prudence,” the company stated in its release.