UPS confident of reaching agreement with Teamsters by July-end

(Reuters) – United Parcel Service Inc said on Tuesday it was confident of reaching an agreement over a new contract with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters union by the end of July.

“We are aligned on several key issues like solving the staffing needs for weekend delivery and ways to mitigate the summer heat in our package delivery vehicle,” UPS Chief Executive Carol Tomé said during a post earnings call with analysts.

Earlier this month, UPS began contract talks with Teamsters covering roughly 340,000 U.S. drivers, package handlers and loaders at the global delivery firm.

The company is working to reach an agreement before the current contract expires at midnight on July 31, as a potential strike may prove costly for its business as UPS is already battling lower volumes due to slowing consumer spending amid elevated levels of inflation.

Teamsters’ demands include better pay across the board, an end to forced overtime, elimination of a two-tier pay system, protection from hot weather and more full-time opportunities.

The union did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Priyamvada C in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)