Owens-Illinois Inc. will close glass container plants in two states,
eliminating about 570 jobs, or 1.5% of its overall work force, as
part of a restructuring plan. The company blamed the closings on
declining use of glass containers, excess capacity, and the need for
cost cutting. About 380 workers at the company's Brockway, Pa., plant
and about 190 at the Lakeland, Fla., plant will lose their jobs.
Owens-Illinois recently reported a third-quarter loss of $449 million
because of asbestos claims and a restructuring program that
eliminated 350 jobs. The cuts are aimed at boosting profits and
making Owens-Illinois more appealing to investors, who have become
anxious about the company's asbestos liability and lackluster
financial performance. The company, which stopped producing
insulation that contained asbestos in 1958, has paid more than $1
billion in claims in the last 20 years. It has 38,000 employees worldwide.