Wednesday, December 03, 2008

The One Silver Lining For Detroit Car Makers (Or At Least Ford)

November was another really awful month for Detroit car makers. Sales for GM fell 41% from a year ago, Ford sales fell 31% and Chrysler sales fell 47%. The one positive thing for at least Ford is that the slide in market share seems to abate. The big three Japanese car makers, Toyota, Honda and Nissan also saw their sales fall, by 34%, 32% and 42% respectively. The recent dramatic decline in gas prices have made in particular Toyota's hybrid model Prius a lot less popular, falling 48.3%.

So at least the big 3 in Detroit can comfort themselves with the knowledge that the big three Japanese car makers are starting to suffer too......

That shouldn't be too big of a comfort though considering that first of all GM and Chrysler still lost market share and secondly because while the relative decline is decelerating the absolute decline is accelerating and because thirdly the Japanese are still profitable unlike the Detroit car makers.

Well worth noting is also that the seasonally adjusted annual rate of car sales fell to a 26-year low of 10.18 million. And that's very bad considering how deep the 1982 recession was and considering that the total population has grown by about a third since then.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...and considering that the total population has grown by about a third since then."

Bingo - this is what i love about your analysis : you place the facts into very relevent contexts which greatly increases their interpretive value.

Many thanks and keep up the good work !

May your blog be more popular than Krugman's and may you one day get the Nobel Prize which you already deserve for your consistently prescient analysis.

2:44 PM  

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