January 29, 2009 at 4:37 pm

Ford Motor Credit to cut 1,200 jobs

Ford Motor Co's finance unit will eliminate 20 percent of its workforce, or about 1,200 workers, as part of a cost-cutting move as the U.S. auto sales rate falls to the lowest since 1982.

"This will help us keep our costs in line with our receivables and the lower industry sales overall," Ford Motor Credit spokeswoman Margaret Mellott said this week.

Ford Credit also needs fewer employees with the sale of the Jaguar and Land Rover brands to Tata Motors Ltd. and the end of its financing relationship with affiliate Mazda Motors Corp., she said. The job cuts begin the middle of next month and are scheduled to be complete by the end of July.

The credit unit will cut 275 salaried and contract employees from the headquarters in Dearborn, about 20 percent of the staff at that location, Mellott said. Automotive News reported the job reductions earlier.