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Strike has major economic impact at UPS

ATLANTA, Aug. 4 -- The strike by Teamsters workers against United Parcel Service is already having a major economic impact on the nation's largest package-delivery company. The Atlanta-based company said today it does not yet know the level to which it can continue to provide service.

A drop in shipments in anticipation of the strike deadline was already costing UPS about $5 million per day. The company says its average daily volume of 12 million packages had fallen to 11 million on Friday. Two million businesses rely on UPS for shipments. The company says it will use non-union and management workers to give highest priority to packages such as perishable goods and hospital supplies. UPS also says it is making 'every effort to ensure our international business is not impacted.' Picketers at the company's distribution center northeast of Atlanta expected the Teamsters strike to stop almost all UPS deliveries. Strike coordinator Benny Stephenson says, 'You can't take and supplement 2,000 to 2,500 people with 150 to 250 people.' UPS has about 83 percent of the nation's surface package delivery market, and about 63 percent when surface and air deliveries are combined. A prolonged strike against the company will also affect other economic sectors. UPS is the biggest customer of the nation's major railroads, contributing about $2 million in revenues daily. UPS' daily payroll of $42 million contributes $3 million in income taxes every day. ---

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