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Inside this issue
Lending Influence: Progressive Group Profits From Pushing Financial Regs
Nissan Stake Raises Hopes for Mitsubishi Dealers in U.S.
Takata Says Latest U.S. Recall Investigative, but Unclear Who Will Pay Costs
Obama Administration Releases Rules on Wellness Programs
Detroit Automakers Ink Deals for Self-Driving Cars
North American Capacity Utilization Peaking In First-Half 2016
Valvoline Teams with Carfax to Keep Customers Informed of Recalls
Avoid Social Media Pitfalls: Pick Right Channels for Your Dealership
Top Stories
Lending Influence: Progressive Group Profits From Pushing Financial Regs

The head of a progressive nonprofit funded by one of the culprits of the 2008 mortgage meltdown is now using his cozy relationship with the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — set up in the wake of the crash to prevent it from happening again — to benefit his own lending business. That business is the Self Help Credit Union, a North Carolina based organization that primarily offers small-scale loans to individuals and businesses. It’s run by Martin Eakes, who simultaneously leads a progressive nonprofit that lobbies for the CFPB to crack down on other businesses making similar loans. In short: As the CFPB tightens the screws on other lenders, Self-Help is expanding its role in the marketplace – while using its own nonprofit to push for additional regulations.
Source: Watchdog.org

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Nissan Stake Raises Hopes for Mitsubishi Dealers in U.S.

The chairman of Mitsubishi Motors Corp.’s U.S. National Dealer Council’s Advisory Board said he sees new life for the brand after Nissan Motor Co.’s $2.2 billion stake. U.S. Mitsubishi dealers have survived a trying history, with the recent fuel-economy fraud in Japan adding to a list of woes including a rocky partnership with DaimlerChrysler AG, a risky financing strategy, a defect coverup and multiple bailouts by the Mitsubishi group companies. The investment by Nissan could bring about a new crop of Mitsubishi models that would give retailers the boost they need [said Ryan Gremore, who runs a Mitsubishi dealership in Normal, Illinois].
Source: Bloomberg

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Takata Says Latest U.S. Recall Investigative, but Unclear Who Will Pay Costs

Japan's Takata Corp. declared nearly 14 million airbag inflators defective as part of an expanded U.S. recall, but it said it considered the recall investigative, leaving the thorny question of cost-sharing with automakers unresolved. The question of just how much Takata will have to pay for a deepening crisis over potentially deadly airbags has been hanging heavily over the company, with management saying that can be worked out only when there is clarity on the root cause of the problem.
Source: Reuters

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Obama Administration Releases Rules on Wellness Programs

May 16 A federal agency on Monday released final rules explaining how employers can offer workers financial incentives to participate in wellness programs without violating federal laws protecting the confidentiality of medical information. The move from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission was meant to clear up confusion over the way two federal laws protecting employees' medical privacy apply to the popular programs, which are designed to control medical spending by reducing obesity, smoking and other risk factors. The rules, which were first proposed in November, mark a compromise with U.S. businesses that opposed the EEOC's previous stance that providing incentives to join voluntary wellness programs rendered them involuntary, and thus illegal.
Source: Reuters

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Detroit Automakers Ink Deals for Self-Driving Cars

Detroit automakers that viewed Silicon Valley as a "serious threat" just a few years ago are now jumping into deals, acquisitions and investments with West Coast tech companies, describing some of the partnerships as "getting married." The new relationships promise to bring the tech and automotive industries closer as they rush to develop self-driving cars, ride-sharing partnerships and to take advantage of other cutting-edge technology.
Source: USA Today

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North American Capacity Utilization Peaking In First-Half 2016

Capacity utilization in North American light-vehicle plants hit its peak in first-half 2016 and is forecast to record two consecutive quarterly year-over-year declines in the second half of this year for the first time since 2011. However, the decline mostly is the result of two new plants being added to the mix this year and because several facilities have undergone enhancements that are increasing their straight-time capability, thereby raising the bar for meeting full utilization. Plant utilization will remain strong by historical standards, running close to 100% in Q3 and Q4 2016, after topping the level in first six months of the year.
Source: Auto Remarketing

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Valvoline Teams with Carfax to Keep Customers Informed of Recalls

Of the more than 35,000 vehicles serviced each day by Valvoline Instant Oil Change, nearly 1 in 4 has an open manufacturer recall, according to an analysis by Carfax. Thanks to a partnership between the two companies, Valvoline will now check vehicles serviced at any of its locations for open recalls using myCarfax.com to send a courtesy email to customers if any recalls are found.
Source: Auto Remarketing

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Avoid Social Media Pitfalls: Pick Right Channels for Your Dealership

When I think about advertising trends that automotive dealerships should adopt, my thoughts immediately jump to social media. Let’s be honest: Social media is a hard sell. It’s nearly impossible to track its ROI. It’s tough to manage well and can take up an enormous amount of time. But with people spending more hours online than ever before, your dealership cannot afford to dismiss social media as an important marketing vehicle. Instead, take a few minutes to learn about the channel and discover the recommendations from our marketing team at NCM Associates.
Source: Auto Remarketing

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          Quotable
          "Anybody that ever said Mitsubishi is not going to make it in the U.S., they can go ahead and rewrite their article. We’re not going anywhere."

              -- Ryan Gremore, Mitsubishi dealer in Normal, Ill., on Nissan's stake in the automaker, Bloomberg, May 16

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