Chinese factory workers have incentives to kill themselves on the job

In what has to be one of the strangest financial incentives ever, and one that must be unintended, Foxconn Technology in China is paying six to 10 years of gross salary to families of its workers who commit suicide at the factory.

The payments of as much as $15,000, according to a New York Times story, are settlements with the families that some factory workers may have viewed as incentive to kill themselves, knowing their families would be helped by the tremendous windfall after they died. It's a grim way for a poor Chinese worker to help his parents out for raising him.

There have been 13 suicides or suicide attempts this year on two Foxconn campuses in Shenzhen, China, where employees live and work. The factories have about 400,000 employees and make products for global companies like Apple, Dell and Hewlett-Packard.