Cash For Clunkers
Goldman Sachs, which disagrees with Edmunds' expectation for an 8.8 million September SAAR, has shared its own projection of 9.3 million. Even so, the drop from the 12.5 million in September 2008 and the 14.1 million in August, is dramatic. What is scary is that there is no indication October will be any better. The only new initiative launched by Detroit: 60 day money back guarantees. Will that stimulate car sales, or simply end up as a bureaucratic nightmare for dealers, is still unknown. Although rental companies, those Chinese rockets like Hertz and Avis whose stocks have gone up by about 10,000%, will very likely not be too happy that GM has now also entered the "rental" car business.
In 10 days auto companies will announce their September auto sales. If auto specialist Edmunds.com is right, expect to see an unprecedented decline in the September SAAR number: from 13.7 million in August to a 28 year low of 8.8 million!
The first fully blown subsidy program in the form of Cash for Clunkers is now over. Many more undoubtedly will follow, with Cash for Woodshed Plasma TV likely to appear in 3 to 6 months. As it will facilitate Made in Taiwan and Japan exports to the US, one does not anticipate any WTO trade wars. Some observations on the consequences of CfC.
In a stark example of how it "should" be done, the recently terminated cash for clunkers subsidy for overleveraged US consumer to purchase Japanese cars, has allowed companies such as Toyota, Honda and Hyundai to push forward a significant amount of their sales, while relying less on the back end of their production curve. Indeed, as Detroit News recently reported, of the five majorbeneficiaries of Cash for Clunkers, 4 were Japanese cars, with Toyota representing 19.2% of all cars sold under the program. And now that they got their sales out of the door, they are winding down capacity.
The June 1 ISM to June 5 NFP high to higher high was +10. The idea was that the Aug 3 ISM to Aug 7 NFP higher high would be roughly +10. If so, it would target 1013. That is precisely what has happened. Notably, the stock market sold off 32 points by the following Monday June 8 before setting a retrace high on Thursday June 11’s retail sales report that were goosed by automaker incentives of $6900 in rebates. Expecting July retail sales to be goosed by similar cash for clunker incentives, we expect the stock market to rally into Thursday’s Aug 13 retail sales report. In short, a rolling top similar to June’s is expected in the first half of August.
AIG (short interest of 16%) and CIT (13%) are today's latest squeeze puppets. Because non-bankruptcy prospects before both companies are just so hot. Will whoever is pulling all the borrow please fess up already.
The big story today was how the O-Team decided to unleash another 2 billion for the Cash for Clunkers program after the first round ran out in a matter of days.
The seemingly wildly popular program that gives an instant rebate for your old hunk of crap car, just may get crapped-out itself… Much sooner than planned.