Nation: Teamster Test

Bending the wage guidelines

Until the last minute, it looked as if bargainers for the nation's trucking industry and 270,000 Teamsters union drivers and loaders had a deal. But just before the Saturday midnight deadline, the union broke off negotiations and announced a "selective" strike against a few major trucking companies. The strike, however, was well short of a total walkout that could cripple the economy.

The two sides, said Chief Federal Mediator Wayne Horvitz, "came awfully close." Only 24 hours before the strike deadline, negotiators agreed to increase the industry's compensation costs during...

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