Fiat Chrysler temporarily cuts pay by 20% for salaried workers amid coronavirus pandemic

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) CEO Mike Manley

Massimo Pinca | Reuters

Fiat Chrysler will temporarily defer the salaries of its white-collar workers by 20% for the next three months as the automaker attempts to save cash to weather the coronavirus crisis.

The pay cuts, according to a Monday letter from CEO Mike Manley obtained by CNBC, will begin Wednesday. Manley also will take a 50% cut in his salary and members of the Group Executive Council (GEC), the company’s highest executive decision-making body, will all take 30% salary cuts, according to the letter.

“Protecting the financial health of the company is everyone’s responsibility and naturally starts with myself and the leadership of FCA,” Manley wrote, citing the cuts are “to avoid the layoff of any permanent employees.”

Fiat Chrysler Chairman John Elkann and the rest of the automaker’s board also have unanimously agreed to forgo their remaining 2020 compensation, Manley said.

The salary cuts for the white-collar workers are expected to be repaid no later than next March 15.

The salary deferments and cuts are in-line with actions taken by Fiat Chrysler’s crosstown rivals, General Motors and Ford Motor. GM last week announced deferred payments of 20% for all of its white-collar workers, while Ford said the automaker’s top 300 executives would defer 20% to 50% of their salaries for at least five months.

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