Labour organizations representing 21,000 bank employees and other workers in the financial sector threatened to call workers out on strike from Thursday. That can lead to major problems and even halt bank card use and electronic banking.
Media outlets were advising Norwegians to pull some cash out of minibanks, and not just because of concerns over possible political or natural crises. Minibanks (ATMs) may be out of order, too, if a strike drags on.
Labour organizations Finansforbundt and LO were meeting employers through the finance industry organization Finans Norge in a state mediator’s office this week. The aim is to hammer out differences over pay after several years of cutbacks and layoffs. “Our members have contributed to solid profits (at the banks) year after year, with shareholders being paid big dividends,” Pål Adrian Hellman of Finansforbundet told news bureau NTB. “They have lost purchasing power. We demand a more fair distribution of the value creation.”
Bank employers responded that they have offered raises based on those granted in other sectors. Insurance companies will also be affected by a strike.