Dana to close eight more plants

Dana Corp, the auto-parts maker fighting a $2.2 billion takeover bid from ArvinMeritor, says it will close eight more factories or offices this year as it completes a 2001 cost-cutting plan. Dana already has closed 31 plants and eliminated about 15,000 jobs, or 20 percent of its workforce, under the October 2001 plan. The company disclosed the figures in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.Dana, the world's biggest maker of axles for pickup trucks, minivans and sport-utility vehicles, said the ArvinMeritor takeover would deny "Dana shareholders the full benefits of the company's restructuring." Dana's board last month urged stockholders to reject the $15-a-share offer as too low and "high risk." Dana didn't say which operations would be closed during the rest of this year. The company said it also divested $710 million in assets under the plan, with net gains of $49.5 million. The company repeated its forecast of 2003 per-share earnings of $1.31 to $1.44, and 2004 profit of at least $300 million, or $2 a share, in the presentation to analysts and investors at the J.P. Morgan/Harbour Auto conference. Dana also lowered its capital-spending plans for this year to $325 million, from its April forecast of $350 million.

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