SOURCE: Industrial Info Resources

November 12, 2007 10:09 ET

American Automotive Industry One Filled With Turmoil and Doubt, a Feature of "Industry Today" on Industrialinfo.com

SUGAR LAND, TX--(Marketwire - November 12, 2007) - Researched by Industrial Info Resources (Sugar Land, Texas)-- With headlines splashed all over news outlets in the past few weeks, the American automotive industry has been receiving much attention lately. This mainly has been due to the recent negotiations between the United Auto Workers (UAW) union and each of the Detroit 3 as they have been putting together their latest four-year contracts. However, underlying those negotiations are an industry rife with problems -- problems that a set of simple negotiations cannot come close to repairing. Join David Pickering, Vice President, Research Industrial Manufacturing for Industrial Info as he discusses these issues and capital spending trends in the Automotive Industry on Industrialinfo.com Radio, November 12, 2007, as part of "Industry Today," a weekly online radio broadcast featuring technology, industry trends and company executives.

In July, foreign automakers took charge of the automotive manufacturing landscape for the first time in the United States, grabbing a 51% market share. Although this is not entirely a surprise, as the foreign automakers have been slowly eating away at the Detroit 3's percentage for several years, it was still somewhat of a shock to see the shift take place. Over the last two years, the Detroit 3 have been reorganizing their operations, attempting to streamline to stem the flow of market share loss. It has been a case of too-little-too-late for the most part.

The Detroit 3 have been running bloated organizations for decades, and the overabundance has finally come home to roost. The latest round of negotiations with the UAW have essentially done little to halt the decline, as the union has been forced to take over the retirees' health-care benefits, agree to two-tiered wage structures and allow for reductions in overall staffing and numbers of operational plants. Although the union has made efforts to gain as much as possible for its membership, the union has traditionally been a major part of the overall problem for the Detroit 3. The cash-hogging jobs bank, gratuitously high-wage structures and the use of strikes as a tool to keep failing plants operational have all contributed to the Detroit 3's fall to second-class status within an industry that they founded a century ago.

Radical restructuring is the tune of the hour as the American automotive industry is essentially being forced to make major, drastic changes in how it runs its businesses or risk elimination from the auto-manufacturing landscape. The recent majority share purchase of Chrysler LLC (Auburn Hills, Michigan) by the private-equity firm Cerberus Capital Management LP (New York, New York) was but the first of many indicators of what could be necessary for the industry to once again thrive in the United States.

Join Mr. Pickering, along with Crazy Al of "Industry Today," to further discuss the recent changes within the American automotive industry and to learn what the future could possibly hold for this once thriving industry.

Click Here to hear the LIVE interview, November 12, 2007, at 10:30 A.M. (EST). Click Here to hear this or any of the more than 240 previous "Industry Today" shows covering topics important to industry spending, including trends, outlooks and focus segments on specific industries.

Industrial Info Resources (IIR) is the leading marketing information services company for the industrial process, heavy manufacturing and energy-related markets throughout the world. For more than 24 years, IIR has provided accurate and timely intelligence through products such as plant and project information databases, focused market databases, industry forecasting, key industry contacts, industry and territorial map products, direct marketing services and applications, and daily industry news. For more information send inquiries to industrialmanufacturing@industrialinfo.com or visit us online at www.industrialinfo.com.

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