News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

August 14, 2020

Conti expects slight recovery for remainder of 2020

Filed under: Auto, Coronavirus/COVID-19, General, Tires — Notch @ 12:49 pm

Continental A.G.’s tire group expects a slight recovery in the tire market for the remainder of 2020, despite suffering a 23 percent drop in first-half sales revenue,

Rubber & Plastic News reports that Conti attributes decline in sales volumes for passenger and light truck tires to the negative impact the COVID-19 pandemic.

The German group said it expects demand for replacement tires for cars and light commercial vehicles to “normalize” in the third quarter, although that means volumes in Europe will be 10 percent to 15 percent lower than a year ago and 5 percent to 10 percent lower in North America.

Continental invests $4 million to expand Indiana site

Filed under: Auto, General, Rubber, Tires, Uncategorized — Notch @ 12:48 pm

Rubber & Plastic News reports that Continental A.G. is planning a $4 million expansion of their Auburn, Indiana facility, transforming the facility into a research, development and technology hub for its ContiTech Vibration Control business.

The $4 million investment will not only upgrade the facility, it will bring more than 45 new jobs to northeastern Indiana, according a joint news release issued by Continental and the Indiana Economic Development Corp. It also will allow ContiTech to consolidate its vibration control technical center operations, currently in Michigan and Canada.

The Indiana facility should be fully operational by 2024.

U.S. auto sales outlook is still low, but shows improvement

Filed under: Auto, Coronavirus/COVID-19, General — Notch @ 12:45 pm

Rubber & Plastic News reports that the outlook for auto sales for the remainder of 2020 is better than it was a few months ago, though far from a banner year.

A recovery began almost as abruptly as things fell apart in the spring, according to analysts who gave an economic overview of light-vehicle production and sales in a Zoom presentation Aug. 5 during the Center for Automotive Research Management Briefing Seminars

But it will take that recovery a long time to get back to the 17 million-plus U.S. sales levels of previous years.

IHS Markit is calling for light vehicle sales of 13.3 million this year, compared with 17.1 million last year.

August 12, 2020

Earnings down double-digits for Toyo 1st half sales

Filed under: Auto, General, Tires — Notch @ 8:39 pm

On August 7,

Toyo Tire released financial results for the second quarter of fiscal year 2020, projecting double digit declines.  Toyo posted 48.3% lower operating income for the six months ended June 30 on 15.7% lower sales. The company’s operating ratio fell from 8.6% to 5.3% and operating income fell to $73.4 million on sales of $1.39 billion. Net earnings fell to $4.8 million, down from 93.1%. Negative effects of lower sales and higher production costs were cited for the decline. Toyo said that tire demand hit bottom in April, and the replacement market has begun to recover in some regions, including North America. As auto manufacturers have resumed production, the size of the demand decline for tires for new vehicles has been shrinking.

Festival of Automotive to be held virtually for 2020

Filed under: Auto, Conferences, General — Notch @ 7:56 pm

The Festival of Automotive conference will be held virtually next week from August 18-20. The meeting will encompass both the WardsAuto Interiors Conference and the WardsAuto UX Conference. Registration is now open for the 3-day event, which features informative sessions and insightful speakers.

July 17, 2020

EU auto registrations down 38% in first half of 2020

Filed under: Auto, Coronavirus/COVID-19 — Notch @ 5:49 pm

On July 16, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association released data on registrations of new passenger cars in the EU for June and for the first half of 2020. For the first six months of 2020, registrations were down 38.1% relative to the same period of 2018. Declines for the individual months are below:

  • January: -7.5%
  • February: -7.4%
  • March: -55.1%
  • April: -76.3%
  • May: -52.3%
  • June: -22.3%

Over the first half of 2020, EU demand for new passenger cars contracted by 38.1%, the result of four consecutive months of unprecedented declines across the region. Among the four major EU markets, Spain saw the biggest decline (-50.9%) so far this year, followed by Italy (-46.1%), France (-38.6%) and Germany (-34.5%).

May 11, 2020

US Ford factories preparing to restart

Filed under: Auto, Coronavirus/COVID-19, Rubber — Notch @ 9:13 pm

On May 18, Ford Motor Co. will resume most North American vehicle production following the lifting of restrictions by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, with parts depots resuming operations on May 1.

The Flat Rock Assembly Plant in southeast Michigan and Oakville Assembly Complex in Canada will remain closed until May 25.

April 28, 2020

Amid global pandemic, IHS sharply lowers 2020 global light vehicle sales forecast

Filed under: Auto, Coronavirus/COVID-19 — Notch @ 11:15 am

IHS Markit, which tracks automotive sales and production trends, sharply lowered its 2020 forecast for global light vehicle sales in response to COVID-19 pandemic, warning that the US will take the biggest hit.

IHS expects global light vehicle sales to fall 22% from prior estimates of more than 12%.  In the US, IHS expects auto sales to fall 26.6% compared with a year earlier.

IHS estimates global light vehicle production to drop 21.2%.

 

March 19, 2020

Detroit 3 to close all North American Plants

Filed under: Auto, General, Tires — Notch @ 1:18 pm

In an effort to keep workers safe and healthy amid COVID-19 outbreak, General Motors and Ford Motor Co. will close North American plants until at least March 30, and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will begin slowing production through the end of the month.

March 18, 2020

Conferences, expos and meetings rescheduled due to Coronavirus outbreak

Filed under: Auto, Conferences, General, Rubber, Rubber Chemicals, Tires — Notch @ 2:15 pm

The following conferences, expos and meetings have been postponed and/or rescheduled due to the coronavirus:

  • As of March 17, 6 pm, the Latin American & Caribbean Tyre Expo and Latin Auto Parts Expo has rescheduled the joint event from July 14-17 to Nov. 17-20 at the recently opened Amador Convention Center in Panama City.  Organizers expect over 400 exhibitors.  Contact Linda Bassitt, president of Latin Expo Group, at linda@latinexpogroup.com for more information.
  • As of March 17, 4:10 pm, the International Silicone Conference has been rescheduled from May 13-14 to Nov. 9-10 in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, at the Sheraton Suites Cuyahoga Falls.  For more information, go to the conference website.
  • As of March 17, 11:53 am, the Fort Wayne Rubber and Plastics Group has postponed its April 8 meeting at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art.  A new date is TBD and will be be “available soon.”
  • As of March 17, 10:47 am, Federal Corp’s factories in Taiwan continue to operate at normal capacity, implementing “stringent safety measures” and “precautionary protocols.”  Domestic travel for employees has been suspended.
  • As of March 16, 4:52pm, Marangoni Tread North America remains operational.  Marangoni is following CDC recommendations and will closely monitor and evaluate the situation.
  • As of March 16, 12:03 pm, NAHAD canceled its upcoming annual convention.  More details can be found here.
  • Late last week, the ACS Rubber Division canceled its Spring Technical Meeting.
  • As of March 16, 10:48 am, the American Coatings Show and Conference scheduled for March 31 through April 2 was postponed.  New dates will be announced soon and organizers are hoping to keep the show at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.  For more information, contact, acshow@paint.org.
  • As of March 16, 10:39 am, Continental A.G. is postponing its 2020 shareholders’ meeting originally scheduled April 30.  It plans to keep the meeting in Hanover and a new date will be announced “soon.”
  • As of March 13, 2:29 pm, the World Adhesive & Sealant Conference set for April 20-22 is postponed.  Organizers are hoping to keep the conference at the Hilton Chicago, and will post updates at wac2020.org.  Email info@wac2020.org for more information.  Those who have booked rooms can check corp.hiltonbusinessonline.com for more information.
  • As of March 13, 11:52 am, the 38th Clemson Global Tire Conference has been canceled.  It was scheduled for April 28-38 on Hilton Head Island.  The conference may still be held in June.  Registered participants may seek immediate refund, have payments held, or have invoices voided.
  • The Mid-American Trucking Show have canceled the 2020 show scheduled for March 26-28 at the Kentucky Exposition in Louisville.  Paid attendee registrations and fees are being moved to the 2021 show, tentatively scheduled for March 25-27, 2021.  For questions, please call 800-743-3100.
  • As of March 13, 11:17 am, the Plastics Industry Association has canceled their lobbying event, and will reschedule at a later date.  Parts of the March board meeting scheduled for March 24-26 in Washington will move to a virtual platform at an undetermined date.
  • As of March 13, 10:49, The Automotive News postponed its annual World Congress originally scheduled for March 24-25 in Detroit, and hopes to sometime in the summer of 2020.
  • As of March 12, 4:39 pm, Marangoni remains operational in the face of government restrictions.  They remain in compliance and will continue operations, arranging for employees to work remotely.
  • As of March 12, 12:02 pm, the Tire Industry Association is postponing its Lobby Day and Environmental Summit scheduled for May 6-7 in Washington.  TIA had planned several events for its 100th anniversary, and will reschedule when the virus subsides.  Currently, TIA does not anticipate any impact for the Global Tire Expo/Specialty Equipment Market Association Show to be held in November in Las Vegas.
  • As of March 12, 10:15 am, the American Chemical Society has canceled their Spring 2020 National Meeting & Expo scheduled for March 22-26 in Philadelphia.
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