UPS (NYSE:UPS) employees belonging to the International Brotherhood of Teamsters union have voted to approve a new five-year national master contract with the company ahead of the July 31 deadline, UPS announced today, however, an agreement covering freight employees needs additional negotiation.

The master contract was headed toward approval with an approval rate of more than 53%, however, a proposed deal with UPS' freight employees was overwhelming rejected by a vote of 4,244 to 1,897, according to data supplied by the Teamsters union. The Associated Press is reporting that more than a dozen local supplemental agreements and riders were losing, according to a preliminary count on the union website. In a written statement, the Teamsters said those apparent defeats were partly due to a provision that would move 140,000 workers from a UPS-sponsored health insurance plan into one that would be jointly administered by the company and the union.

In response to the freight workers' rejecting a new agreement, UPS Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Labor Relations John McDevitt said, "It will be business as usual while UPS and the IBT resolve remaining issues and Teamster represented employees ratify new agreements."

The recently ratified national master contract covers 235,000 full- and part-time UPS employees throughout the U.S., and will remain in effect until July 31, 2018.

-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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