Harley-Davidson Going Over Some Rough Road

The American motorcycle maker announced Friday its sales in 2008 tumbled and it expects 2009 to be another tough year. It plans to cut 1,100 jobs or about 12 percent of its workforce. The cuts will take place over the next two years. The company also plans to close a factory in Wisconsin and consolidate plants as it brings downs production.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

NPR's business news starts with downshifting at Harley-Davidson.

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MONTAGNE:

The American motorcycle maker is going over some rough road. Today, the company said its sales in 2008 tumbled, and it expects 2009 to be another tough year. So Harley-Davidson is cutting 1,100 jobs, about 12 percent of its total workforce. The cuts will take place over the next two years. Harley-Davidson says U.S. sales dropped more than 10 percent last year, though overseas sales are up. Still, the vast majority of Harley-Davidsons are sold here in the U.S. The company also plans to close a factory in Wisconsin and consolidate plants as it brings down production.

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