TWO HARBORS (AP) -- A Two Harbors manufacturing plant is shutting down for a week because of weak demand for its products.
The temporary closure of LaBounty Manufacturing Inc. that started Monday puts 106 of the company's 156 employees out of work for the week.
"This is a seasonal business, and we're in a slow period right now," said Gerry Gould, vice president of investor relations for Stanley Works, LaBounty's parent company.
The company makes steel-cutting shears, grapples, excavation equipment and concrete pulverizers.
Stanley opted for a temporary shutdown rather than layoffs because, Gould said, "We hate to see anyone lose their jobs."
"We have a good work force in place there," Gould said, "and this allows us to keep people in place."
LaBounty isn't the only business that has struggled as a result of declining demand for equipment used in the demolition, scrap recycling and reconstruction industries.
Genesis Equipment and Manufacturing of Superior, Wis., recently laid off 25 of its 81 employees.
Kevin Bakke, chairman and chief executive officer of Genesis, cited several factors that have combined to hurt business, including high fuel costs, fewer building starts and the availability of relatively cheap imported scrap metal.
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