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AT&T Mobility Unveils Details of Tentative Deal With CWA

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AT&T Inc. (T - Free Report) has recently revealed information regarding a tentative deal with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) in relation with AT&T Mobility Orange unit employees.

Announced on Dec 13, the four-year contract covers more than 20,000 AT&T Mobility employees (in wireless retail, call center and tech segments) in 36 states and the District of Columbia. The proposed offer includes wage hikes, healthcare benefits, employment security for call center and retail sales employees and retirement benefits, including pension and savings plan. The proposed contract is likely to new industry standards for pay rates and job security.

The contract follows after 11 months of negotiations and public disputes between the company and workers. In May, thousands of CWA members held a three-day strike at several locations in New Jersey, including East Brunswick, Toms River and Oakhurst.

The telecom service provider awaits approval from the union members by Jan 12, 2018.

If the proposed agreement goes through, AT&T will reach 32 different labor agreements since 2015, covering about 165,000 employees. This will help the service provider strengthen relationship with the union and encourage employees to continue working with the company.

This is not the first time AT&T is trying to resolve issues with CWA.

Per a FierceTelecom report, AT&T and CWA approved a labor agreement related to CWA-represented former DirecTV employees in four states, on Mar 6. The agreement covered 280 employees in Delaware, Maryland, New Mexico and Oregon.

On Mar 3, AT&T and CWA reached a four-year (Apr 9, 2017 to Apr 10, 2021) tentative labor agreement with the company’s Southwest wireline workforce. This included 20,000 employees in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas.

Till then, AT&T had a total of 19 different labor agreements for the 2016-2017 period, covering more than 81,000 employees. This included 10 agreements covering nearly 7,800 former DirecTV employees. Between 2015 and 2016, AT&T successfully negotiated 25 labor contracts covering a total of 102,000 workers. In December 2016, AT&T completed an agreement on a new contract covering 2,000 DirecTV call center workers.

Such labor negotiations help to avoid long labor strikes which are common in the wireless industry.

Similar Labor Negotiations

In November 2017, Frontier Communications Corp’s (FTR - Free Report) workers represented by CWA union in West Virginia, Ashburn and Virginia, extended their current contract till Mar 3, 2018.  The contract covers 1,600 CWA members and was originally set to expire on Nov 4.

In June 2017, CenturyLink Inc (CTL - Free Report) and CWA  agreed on an extension covering almost 25% of the company’s total workforce, spread across 13 states, including Oregon, Idaho, and Colorado. The company agreed to increase the annual pay from 2.5% to 3%, while maintaining the existing pension and savings plan along with increasing employee contributions for health care in the deal.

Zacks Rank & Price Performance

Currently, AT&T carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

AT&T portrays an impressive price performance. In the past month, shares of AT&T have rallied 11.1% compared with the industry’s gain of 9.8%.



A Key Pick

A better-ranked stock in the broader Computer and Technology sector include Harris Corporation (HRS - Free Report) .

Harris Corporation currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Moreover, it portrays an impressive earnings history, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the last four quarters with an average beat of 2.80%.

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