The United States is experiencing a season in which strikes are the clear protagonists. For several months now, the nation has been facing more than 20 strikes called by various unions and the automobile manufacturers are the latest to join them. The United Auto Workers (UAW) began its strike last Friday and called on almost 13,000 workers to do "rotating" stoppages.
This strike, although concerning, has not yet led to any significant impact on the American economy. This does not mean that it could not have one, since, if it worsens, it could severely damage U.S. finances. This was stated to CNBC by Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics: "The immediate impact of the auto workers strike will be limited, but that will change if the strike broadens and is prolonged."
In fact, the economist estimated that the quarterly impact of this stoppage could be 1.7% on GDP. Automobile production, explains the television network, represents 2.9% of the GDP of the entire nation.
4.1 million work days lost in August due to strikes
In addition, these workers are already part of the September statistics for lost work days, along with the strikes called by the Writers Guild of America a.k.a SAG-AFTRA Union, as well as that of state employees of the University of Michigan or hotel workers in Los Angeles.
That figure broke a record in August when, according to Department of Labor statistics, the strikes have resulted in the highest number of workdays lost in 23 years. More specifically, during that month alone, 4.1 million work days were lost. This is the highest figure accumulated since 2000 when several stoppages also caused significant economic consequences.
The days lost due to stoppages only increase. If the 4.1 million working days are added to those registered in July, the figure grows to 6.4 million. And, so far this year, the number increases to 7.4 million days lost . A figure that is nothing like the 636 days that were recorded in 2022 .