Business, Finance & Economics

U.S. autoworkers and the competition

(Who gets hurt overseas by the U.S. auto industry's contraction?) It's the European subsidiaries of the American car companies. If General Motors in particular is looking for aid in Europe, I'm sure there will be strings attached to that�that that money will have to be spent in the countries giving them the money. (Remind us what the European subsidiaries are.) Ford has Volvo, GM uses Voxol and others, they also own Saab in Sweden and they do sell small numbers of Cadillac. Those brands have done well in Europe and created jobs here, and that has helped economies in Europe. (How many jobs outside the U.S. are dependent on orders from the Big Three auto makers in Detroit and where are they?) Most of the component jobs are in the low cost countries. There are some high value components coming from Western Europe, but for the developing countries they can't afford to lose orders from America because it's part of their development. The point here is people don't buy cars, they buy car ownership. If you decide not to buy a new car this year, used car markets are quite dependant on the new car also.

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(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.)

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