European auto sales increase versus 2008

autos euJul09.jpg

Any improvement in the troubled auto sector is extremely good news for the chemical industry, after the battering of the past few months. Thus the blog welcomes news, as the chart shows, that European sales increased 2.4% in June, the first rise for over a year.

Government support for scrapping older cars has led the way. The German market is up 41% versus 2008, and may hit 4 million sales in 2009. Italy was up 12% and France 7%. But the UK and Spain were both down 16%, as homeowners worry about negative equity.

Analysts JD Power warn that the market could collapse again, if the schemes are not renewed for 2010. They suggest Germany, for example, could see a 35% fall to 2.6 million sales. But for the moment, at least, government action on both sides of the Atlantic continues to keep chemical and polymer sales moving through the auto supply chain.

About Paul Hodges

Paul Hodges is Chairman of International eChem, trusted commercial advisers to the global chemical industry. He also serves as a Global Expert for the World Economic Forum. The aim of this blog is to share ideas about the influences that may shape the chemical industry and the global economy over the next 12 – 18 months. It looks behind today’s headlines, to understand what may happen next in critical areas such as oil prices, China and Emerging Markets, currencies, autos, housing, economic growth and the environment. Please do join me and share your thoughts. Between us, we will hopefully develop useful insights into the key factors that will drive the industry's future performance.

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