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Automotive Quarterly Forecast Update: Global Outlook

SpecialChem / Jan 15, 2009

The automotive sector is troubled more than most in difficult economic times-a new vehicle is the ultimate discretionary purchase and the second largest purchase a household makes following their home and consumers are deferring purchases until confidence is restored. In addition, the absence of available credit is now severely hindering affordability and involuntarily forcing consumers out of the market globally. After a very dispiriting end to 2008, many markets and automakers are expected to continue enduring a tumultuous path in 2009. In recent months, waning consumer confidence and spending, housing and equity market turmoil, and the credit crisis coupled with a weakening US economy, have coalesced to drive light vehicle sales to their lowest per capita level in nearly 50 years. Industry sales volumes will likely fall to 11.6 million units in 2009, with the first quarter sales volumes reflective of the 10.3 million unit SAAR posted in the last quarter of 2008, with expected modest improvement as the year progresses.

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