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Auto Industry Slide Bankrupts Major Supplier


One of the biggest makers of automobile parts in the United States is bankrupt, the latest casualty of a slumping automobile industry.

Visteon Corporation makes lighting systems, electronics and climate-control systems for U.S.-based Ford Motor Company and Korea's Hyundai Motors, among others. But the company said Thursday it has too many expenses that "are not sustainable given the current economic environment."

Visteon employs about 31,000 people. Earlier this year, the parts supplier announced it was putting many of its employees on a four-day work week and cutting their pay by 20-percent.

Visteon is a former division of Ford Motor Company and still its largest parts supplier.

It became an independent company in 2000 but has not made money in nine years.

Documents filed with a federal bankruptcy court show Ford will provide Visteon with the money it needs to operate while the parts-maker restructures.

Slumping car sales have been hurting companies that supply parts to the major automakers, prompting many to ask the U.S. government for help.

They warn millions of workers could lose their jobs unless the government steps in.

A report by the research firm Grant Thornton in may found that up to 40 percent of U.S. auto parts suppliers are in financial trouble.

Auto parts suppliers in Japan have also reported losses this year, while India's Tata Motors has delayed payments to some of its suppliers because of plunging car sales.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.



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