As the government shutdown enters its third week, some automakers are already expressing concern that it will slow the industry’s robust growth this year.
General Motors, the nation’s largest automaker, acknowledged that the shutdown was chipping away at the consumer confidence that automakers depend on to sell vehicles, even if it was still too early to gauge the full impact of the fiscal standoff.
“The longer this issue goes unresolved, the growing anxiety among consumers and the market will not help the industry keep up its strong pace,” said Greg Martin, a spokesman for General Motors.
Earlier this week, Hyundai also said its sales could fall as much as 10% in October because of uncertainty surrounding the shutdown, according to John Krafcik, chief executive and president of Hyundai Motor America.
“Anytime you turn on the news, it’s all you’re hearing about,” Mr. Krafcik told Bloomberg on Monday. “We think that anxiety is the sort of anxiety that keeps customers, potential buyers, on the sidelines when they’re thinking about a big purchase like an automobile.”
The automakers are coming off a sluggish September, when new vehicle sales were off 4.2%. That was the first time that industry wide sales had dropped since January 2011. Now, rising economic uncertainty is adding to the concern that the sales momentum created this year by pent-up demand and readily available credit could continue to slow, analysts also said.
Via New York Times
) - Wednesday, October 16th, 2013 - filed under General Motors
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