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Tennessee GM plant to lay off 680, end 3rd shift amid virus

SPRING HILL, Tenn. | General Motors said Wednesday it will lay off 680 workers at its Tennessee assembly plant and eliminate the facility’s third shift, moves the company said are due to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement about the Spring Hill plant, General Motors said it believes the best way to react to the unforeseen change in market conditions due to COVID-19 is to reduce output and continue to operate on two shifts effective immediately.

The layoffs are effective July 31. The plant employs 3,700 people total and has union representation through the United Auto Workers.

Before pandemic, Czech Budvar beer sales hit a record

PRAGUE | Beer production at Budvar, which has been in a long legal dispute with U.S. giant Anheuser-Busch over use of the “Budweiser” brand, increased last year to the highest level in the brewer’s 124-year history.

Budejovicky Budvar NP, a Czech state-owned brewery, said Wednesday that its output rose 4.8% to 44.36 million gallons in 2019, before the pandemic hit global trade and business.

The brewer’s exports were up 7.4% to 30.49 million gallons last year, also a record, to almost 80 countries. Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Russia and Britain were the biggest foreign markets for Budvar last year.

U.S. agency probes touch-screen failures in Tesla Model S

DETROIT | Complaints that Tesla’s giant touch screens can fail have drawn the attention of U.S. safety regulators.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says in documents that it’s investigating failures in the 2012 through 2015 Tesla Model S.

Documents posted Wednesday said the agency has received 11 complaints about the screens over the past 13 months in vehicles that have been in use from 3.9 years to 6.3 years.

GNC files for bankruptcy

Health and wellness company GNC Holdings has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. It is looking to close at least 800 to 1,200 stores.

The company said in a statement that it’s looking to restructure its balance sheet at the same time it explores finding a potential buyer, with a minimum purchase price of at least $760 million.

GNC and all of its subsidiaries remain open for business.

— From AP reports