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Top 5 Stories
Opinion: Bureau of Consumer Protection Must Put Consumers First
Toyota Production Recovery Quicker Than Expected
GM, Ford, Chrysler Adding Jobs, Near Pre-Crash Employment Levels
Chrysler's April Sales Rise 20% on Non-U.S. Gains
U.S. May Require At Least 2% Better Fuel Efficiency Annually
Top 5 Stories
Opinion: Bureau of Consumer Protection Must Put Consumers First
By Todd J. Zywicki

Congress should reform the reform before it is too late

As the effective date for the new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection approaches this summer, observers are expressing mounting concerns about its unprecedented power and lack of oversight. Newly empowered House Republicans have introduced several legislative proposals to trim the sails of the new agency, most notably House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus‘ proposal to change the bureau’s single-director management structure to that of a five-member commission. While those efforts are expected to fail in the Democratic-controlled Senate for now, there are several much-needed reforms Republicans could propose to further the bureau’s consumer-protection mission while protecting consumers and small businesses from the unintended consequences of regulatory overreach by an unaccountable bureaucracy that would raise credit costs, restrict access to credit and do nothing to address the underlying problems of misaligned incentives that caused the financial crisis.
Source: The Washington Times

Editor's note: Professor Zywicki's observations on the benefits of having a consumer protection agency, such as the Federal Trade Commission, with built-in checks and balances and appropriate congressional oversight underscore the importance of the exclusion that dealers secured last year from the jurisdiction of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. In considering rules and engaging in enforcement actions that involve dealers, the Federal Trade Commission must make decisions that are approved by a multimember, bipartisan commission and it must operate under an appropriations process that ensures accountability.

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Toyota Production Recovery Quicker Than Expected

TOKYO — Toyota says its production recovery will be quicker than initially expected by about a month, with car manufacturing gradually picking up in Japan and abroad from next month. Toyota Motor Corp. made the announcement in a statement Wednesday ahead of releasing its earningss for the fiscal year ended March. The Japanese automaker had initially said production improvements wouldn't start in Japan until about July, and overseas in August, with a full recovery not expected until late this year.
Source: The Associated Press

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GM, Ford, Chrysler Adding Jobs, Near Pre-Crash Employment Levels

With General Motors promising Tuesday to add or retain more than 4,000 jobs, the Detroit Three are gaining credence as job creators. In fact, they're on course to return to the pre-crash employment levels of 2008. In a blog post Tuesday, the White House patted itself on the back for the new auto jobs. Ron Bloom, the president's assistant for manufacturing policy, wrote that because of President Barack Obama's "tough love, the American auto industry is now positioned to grow and prosper. ... Since GM and Chrysler emerged from bankruptcy in June 2009, the auto industry has added 115,000 jobs -- the fastest pace of job growth in the auto industry since 1998."
Source: Detroit Free Press

Editor's note: Franchised new-vehicle dealers also are hiring additional employees as sales improve, says NADA Chief Economist Paul Taylor. Franchised new-vehicle dealerships currently employ nearly 1 million Americans, Taylor says, and that figure will likely top 1 million jobs in the next two years. "Higher employment will come more quickly if gas prices moderate over the coming months," Taylor says. "That will assure a broader mix of vehicles is sold and mitigate the shortage of small cars from Japan resulting from the tragic earthquake and tsunami."

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Chrysler's April Sales Rise 20% on Non-U.S. Gains

Chrysler Group LLC, the U.S. automaker operated by Fiat SpA, said global automobile sales in April rose 20 percent from a year earlier as deliveries outside North America increased at a faster rate than in March. Global deliveries climbed to 160,380 last month, Auburn Hills, Michigan-based Chrysler said in an e-mail. Worldwide sales this year through April rose 18 percent to 554,259, trailing the 32 percent growth rate that Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne has targeted for this year. Marchionne is seeking to refinance Chrysler’s debt to repay U.S. and Canadian government loans this quarter, allowing Fiat to exercise an option to raise its stake in the U.S. automaker to 46 percent from 30 percent.
Source: Bloomberg

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U.S. May Require At Least 2% Better Fuel Efficiency Annually

WASHINGTON — Federal regulators say they won't require annual improvements in automotive fuel efficiency of less than 2 percent between 2017 and 2025, but have "tentatively concluded" that an annual improvement of 7 percent is as high as automakers can be expected to reach. In a notice posted Tuesday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it is researching the impact of raising fuel efficiency in the 2 percent to 7 percent annual range. NHTSA and the Environmental Protection Agency said previously they are working together on 3 percent to 6 percent annual increases. That would require a fleetwide average of between 47 mpg and 62 mpg for each automaker by 2025. Under the toughest scenario, the government estimates, 14 percent of all cars and trucks would be full electric vehicles.
Source: The Detroit News

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NADA Used Car Guide Redesigns Website
Follow along as editors of the NADA Used Car Guide blog about changes in the used-car and -truck markets on the guide's revamped website, www.nada.com/b2b.

Dealer Executive Education at Babson College August 2011 Class Forming Now
Babson College has the nation's No. 1 ranked MBA program for entrepreneurship, a distinction it has earned for 17 consecutive years.

May Discounts From Lenovo
NADA members can use eCoupon USXMAYSAVINGS2011 at checkout to get an additional 8% off IdeaPad Y Series and an additional 10% off IdeaCentre All in One Desktops.

HP's Inventory Blowout
NADA members can save $330 on HP's Compaq 6005 Pro Small Form Factor Desktop PC and $440 on HP's Compaq 800 Elite Small Form Factor PC with free U.S. ground shipping.

 
NADAFrontPage.com
For comprehensive auto industry news, visit the online news magazine NADAFrontPage.com.
Quotable
"The new CFPB promises higher costs and reduced access to credit for American consumers - the only question now is how much of an impact will be felt."

    — Todd J. Zywicki, George Mason University law professor, in an editorial arguing Congress should take steps to build greater accountability into the new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection "or consumers will be the losers in the end," The Washington Times, May 6

Video Highlights
 
GM Sales Chief Discusses Progress, Challenges Ahead (AutoFocus) 

 
2011 NADA-IHS Auto Forum Offers Insiders' View of Present, Future (NADA-TV)

 
Analyst Says Gas Prices Affecting Small, Midsize Used Markets (AutoFocus)


NAD Charitable Foundation Supports Wounded Veterans Initiative (NADA-TV)

Tornado Relief


Upcoming Webinars

Wednesday, May 11, at 1 p.m. (Eastern): “Rein in Out-of-Control Technology Costs,” with Paul R. MacDonald, president of TriMac Automotive Advisory Group

Wednesday, May 18, at 1 p.m. (Eastern): “One-Price Selling: In Sync with Today’s Auto Purchasers,” presented by Mark Rikess, CEO of The Rikess Group


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