- Egypt rights center raided, 2 Mubaraks acquitted
- New Mexico Supreme Court rules same-sex marriage constitutional
- Blame Bush: 5 years later, that’s still the mantra, pollsters find
- Dutch prostitutes demand same retirement benefits as soccer stars
- John McCain to Harry Reid: I’ll ‘kick the crap’ out of you
- Dogs that talk: Researchers seek $10K for ‘No More Woof’ technology
- 1,000 firefighters called to battle stubborn Big Sur wildfire
- Black Friday brouhaha: Millions of Target shoppers hit by credit card theft
- Britain orders airplane to rescue citizens from violent South Sudan
- Mega Millions winner emerges as Georgia mom, in ‘disbelief’
Detroit 3 see auto sales drop by more than 10%
Question of the Day
Detroit's Big Three auto makers -- Ford, Chrysler and GM -- each saw U.S. sales of their vehicles decline by more than 10 percent in June, compared to May, in a sign that the economic recovery remains fragile.
These automakers verified the analysts who had projected a decrease in sales because of consumers' hesitation to purchase cars in an environment of high unemployment.
"The drop-off is fundamental of economic recovery," said Anthony Pratt, an industry analyst at Autofacts, a site affiliated with PriceWaterhouseCoopers. "We may not be entirely thorough the woods yet in terms of the recession."
In reports released Thursday, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp. both said their U.S. sales fell 13 percent in June, a telling indication that the industry couldn't maintain the slow increases of previous months. Similarly, Chrysler LLC fell by nearly 12 percent.
The poor June figures were not unexpected and Mr. Pratt said 2010 is still likely to be an improvement over 2009 — with the total number of cars and trucks sold projected at around 11.6 million, an improvement over last year's 10.4 million.
"Year over year numbers should increase from last year, but we're not going to see a rapid growth," Mr. Pratt said. "It's a long process to recovery."
Three of Japan's major players in the industry also suffered sales losses — Toyota Motor Co.'s June sales were down 14 percent over May, Honda's and Subaru's numbers each slipped 9 percent.
South Korea's Hyundai Motor Corp. was the only big automaker to post an increase in June, a 4 percent rise over May.
Amid the poor month to month numbers, the three brands still saw signs of hope in its results.
Ford, Lincoln and Mercury totaled 954,745 units sold in first half sales, which is an increase of 28 percent from last year's results. June sales saw 170,900 units sold, up 15 percent from June 2009.
"New products continue to drive Ford's success," said Ken Czubay, Ford vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. "Ford and its dealers continue to offer customers the strongest value proposition: leading fuel economy, quality and resale value on a wide range of vehicles. That's why our business is growing."
Likewise, sales reported for the GM's four core brands — Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac — rose 36 percent over June 2009, helped by a strong increase in demand for crossover vehicles and a mild recovery in sales of pickup trucks. Ford's pickup truck demand was equally strong, with sales of the new Super Duty increased by 58 percent over last June. Chrysler saw an upsurge of demand in the Wrangler and Dodge markets.
"As companies continue to invest in their businesses, we expect this segment to continue to recover," said Don Johnson, vice president of GM's U.S. sales operations. "We think the release of some pent-up demand in the pickup market is an indication that a fundamental part of the U.S. economy is gradually strengthening."
However, the June 2009 figures reflect the depths of one of the worst recessions in recent history.
Even before the numbers were released, Detroit analysts were playing down expectations for the June numbers, generally predicting overall sales for the industry to drop by 10 percent or more from May 2010.
"The recovery from such a severe global recession as we experienced is never easy and it is never linear. We don't expect every month to be stronger than the last. Will June measure up to May? Probably not. Is that cause for concern? Not in the least," George Pipas, the U.S. sales analyst for Ford Motor Co., told The Washington Times on Tuesday.
Mr. Pipas said automakers don't put too much stock in month-to-month fluctuations, instead looking at quarterly numbers.
"You can count on me to keep the cork in the champagne bottle if July's sales rate is higher than June," he said.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
By Andrew P. Napolitano
Fourth Amendment says Obama is not at liberty to collect metadata
- Calling sentence disparities unfair, Obama pardons 8 crack offenders
- Homeland Security helps smuggle illegal immigrant children into the U.S.
- Gov't wasted $30 billion on 'pillownauts,' crystal goblets -- buying human urine!
- Bill Gates: The Secret Santa disguised as a 'friendly fellow' on Reddit
- Armed response, not restrictive gun laws, brought swift end to school shooting
- Obamacare 'pajamas boy' gets roundly mocked
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
- Duck Dynasty Phil Robertson suspended indefinitely for gay quip
- U.S. Army mulls wiping out memory of Robert E. Lee, 'Stonewall' Jackson
- Outrage over Phil Robertson suspension, 'malignant' political correctness
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Paul Rondeau exposes the propaganda, media tricks, and government policies that undermine our families, faith, freedom…and even life itself
Implement these actionable tips, how-to’s and best practices in 10 minutes or less to leverage online communications and technology for brand, business and career development.
The world impacts us. What happens in our towns, cities, states, country and on this planet makes a difference to us.
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow