Archive - Sep 2019

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September 24

Ford's debt rating downgraded by Moody's: a strong sign

Junked Ford
In the midst of the Frankfurt Motor Show, Moody's announced that it was downgrading its credit rating on Ford Motor Company's debt from Baa3 to Ba1.
 
It thus removed bonds issued by Ford from the "investment grade" category and placed them in the "speculative" a/k/a "junk bond" category.
As asset management specialists explain, the risk is that prices will fall as some investors are not allowed to hold such securities, displaced to "non-investment grade" category: they are then required to get rid of them.
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September 23

The automated vehicle coming down, hard

Flying high
Hard drug users know this, after the euphoric or energizing effects of their favourite substances have ceased to appear, a difficult period begins when the bare reality recovers its rights: coming down, hard.
 
For the myth of the driverless vehicle that many in the automotive industry have been shooting up with in recent years, the coming down from the fix began in 2019 and the story telling of the five-levels road map, which only raised problems of tempo, is in a bad way.
The take-off no longer seems so inevitable. Fundraising will prove more difficult and the terror that the supporters of the autonomous revolution used to exert on central or local authorities may well calm down: the fields of experimentation and subsidies will be more difficult to find.
 
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September 16

Climate emergency, industrial emergency, social emergency: how to arrange the three-way race?

Bet your job
The state of emergency in which the automotive industry finds itself at the end of 2019 gives rise, in Frankfurt and elsewhere, to a complex interplay of influence in which everyone backs their words to a cause that is a priori legitimate to counter another stakeholder who invokes another one.
 
A year ago, the EU based its injunctions on the climate emergency. Car manufacturers and governments alike are sensitive to the financial imperative and would like SUV sales to be able to continue to generate cash to cover losses on EVs for the former, and to finance inventives for the latter     .
Trade unions, SMEs and regions that rely on automobile clusters to keep jobs are seeing factories weakened and the number of jobs destroyed in the automotive sector. They fear that those created by electrification will not be of much concern to them.
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ACEA changes feet and heads to push electrification

"Angels and Demons" party in Brussels
On September 4, ACEA organized a conference entitled "Leading the mobility transformation".
 
It is in this context that it was announced that the Manufacturers' Association had co-signed a joint letter with Transport and Environment and Eurelectric (association of electrical industries) calling on the European and national authorities to accelerate the implementation of all the measures that will enable the massive electrification desired by the politicians to become effective.
At stake of course, are the continuation of the various forms of aid for the purchase of electric vehicles or plug-in hybrids and the increase in the use of charging infrastructures.
 
Taking up the famous theme of the "right to plug", T&E states on this subject:
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September 1

The worrying evolution of employment in [France's] automotive industry

To be continued...

Toyota announced on August 28 that it would recruit 500 people at its Onnaing site. These new recruits will increase the workforce to 4,500 employees and correspond to the €300 million investment announced at the beginning of 2018 to increase the site's production capacity to 300,000 vehicles per year. Management indicates that the number of employees has increased from 2,938 in January 2018 to 3,150 today, with a target of 3,600 by the end of 2020.
We can deduce that the number of fixed-term and temporary employees is 850 and will be 900 by the end of 2020. Quite the opposite, in April at PSA's Mulhouse site, we learned that about a thousand jobs, mainly temporary jobs, would be cut by the end of 2019, due to the shutdown of the small SUV Peugeot 2008 production at the site, which in mid-October will result in the termination of the night shift employing 960 people.
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Copyright© Gerpisa
Concéption Tommaso Pardi
Administration Géry Deffontaines

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