Allstate, in Reversal, Looks to Jettison Weak Agents From the WSJ. Highlights: the company says it will cut base pay by 20% for all its agents—who are contractors, not employees—so more money can be paid in additional performance bonuses to the top tier. Allstate also has ramped up an initiative to give its better agents loans to help them buy less-successful agencies and take over their client lists. The overhaul will be rolled out over the next two years. An Allstate spokeswoman said the company had no set target for how many agencies it expected to have once the process is completed. It now has about 11,500 agencies in the U.S. Some agents have objected to the company's plans to alter the commission structure. The National Association of Professional Allstate Agents in August voted to affiliate with the Office and Professional Employees International Union, a decision NAPAA said was driven by anger over the changes. They're going union!