Deere can afford to settle strike: Swenson

November 8, 2021

David SwensonDavid Swenson, research scientist, was interviewed for a Nov. 5 story in, "10,000 John Deere Workers Strike THREE WEEKS at Midwest Plants."

“They can afford to settle this matter on much more favorable terms for the union and still maintain very strong profitability,” Swenson said.

Swenson said the strike’s impact could spread further if companies supplying Deere plants are forced to lay off workers. Deere will thus come under pressure from suppliers and from customers who need parts for their Deere equipment to handle the strike quickly and Deere will be concerned about losing market share if farmers decide to buy from other companies this fall.

“There’s going to be a lot of pressure on Deere to get closer to union demands,” Swenson said.

Swenson was also on a panel discussing how rural Iowa's troubles have impacted community journalism, like the Storm Lake Times, as reported in the Nov. 5 Yahoo News story, "Documentary shows the challenge in community newspapers."

David Swenson, from Iowa State University's department of economics, was one of the panelists after the showing to discuss how rural Iowa's troubles have impacted community journalism, like the Storm Lake Times.

Swenson said the development of technology, including what has been done in agriculture, over the years has changed Iowa's rural areas that have an agriculture-influenced economy.

"We have more efficient agriculture and manufactured goods," he said, adding how rural America has exchanged land for technology.

He also answered questions from:

Natalia Alamdari, Flat Water Free Press, about the evolution of the hog industry in the Midwest.

And Lauren Johson, KCCI, and KCRG, about holiday shopping and how supply chain issues will affect consumers this season.

Grant Schulte, Associated Press, about the effectiveness of the Iowa and Nebraska governors’ efforts to boost employment by constraining unemployment benefits and requiring higher job search standards.

Cara Smith, Quad City Times, about Deere workers taking on part time jobs during the strike, and whether this was a good or a bad sign for the negotiations and the strikers.

The Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier, Nov. 13
McClatchy Newspapers, about how inflation is affecting households and whether the new infrastructure bill will stem it. Nov. 15

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