BILLINGS, Mont. -

Stillwater Mining Co. officials say they are offering buyouts to up to 50 hourly union workers from its mining operations in south-central Montana as part of an effort to cut $4.3 million in costs.
    
CEO Mick McMullen made the announcement during a conference call with investors on Thursday.
    
The buyouts follow the layoffs of 35 salaried, non-union Stillwater employees last week. Union officials reported the layoffs, but the company would not confirm them until Thursday's conference call.
    
The company reported $19.6 million in earnings for the first quarter of 2014, or 15 cents per diluted share, up from $14.6 million a year ago.