Archive for the ‘Financials’ Category

Tesla Stock Rebounds, But Questions Remain About Production

Musk fires up troops to break production record.

by on Jun.18, 2019

Tesla's stock rallied in early morning trading, but by the end of the day, it gave back most of its gains.

After plunging last month to levels not seen since 2016, Tesla shares have been rebounding in recent days. And though a Tuesday morning rally wound up the day in negative territory by the time the final bell was rung, shares are still up more than 4% in recent days, giving the battery-carmaker a bit of a respite.

But whether the upturn will continue is far from certain, with analysts and investors anxiously waiting to see how Tesla’s second-quarter production and sales numbers fare. The automaker fell well short of its first quarter target, driving its bottom line deep into the red. CEO Elon Musk has signaled that the losses likely will continue for the current quarter, but he has also indicated that production and sales have been picking up.

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Separately, Tesla bulls appear relieved by the 47-year-old entrepreneur’s newfound caution when it comes to using his Twitter . Musk has found himself in serious trouble on several occasions over the past year due to his tendency to say whatever comes to mind in his steady flow of tweets. Among other things, that has led to his removal as Tesla chairman and it had earlier this year raised the prospect he might also be forced out as CEO. (more…)

Automakers Push Back on Trump Plan to Relax Mileage Rules

Expected White House plan would trigger legal actions and “untenable” uncertainty, 17 OEs warn.

by on Jun.07, 2019

Pres. Donald Trump thought he would win industry support from industry leaders over CAFE cuts but has seen opposition, instead/

In an unusual move, 17 automakers, including giants General Motors, Ford and Toyota, have sent a letter to President Donald Trump urging him not to move ahead on plans to roll back federal fuel economy standards – a move that puts the industry more in line with environmentalists than the anti-regulatory White House.

The Trump Administration has signaled since it was first inaugurated its intention to roll back Obama-era guidelines that would have seen the Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standard rise to 54.5 mpg by 2025. The administration’s draft plans would freeze the numbers at 2021 model-year levels, or about 37 mpg.

The Last Word!

The proposal has already generated significant opposition from environmental and consumer groups, as well as the State of California which would effectively lose its current right to set standards higher than those established by the federal government. California has played lead in the various legal actions that have been filed to block any rollback even before the original outline of a plan the White House announced was formalized.

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French Government Blamed for Collapse of Fiat Chrysler – Renault Merger Plan

Government’s “cumulative demands and pressures” prove too much; FCA opts out rather than accepting further delays.

by on Jun.06, 2019

FCA CEO Mike Manley had hoped to create the world's third-largest automaker with Renault.

Less than two weeks after proposing a merger-of-equals with Renault that would have formed the world’s third-largest automaker, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles withdrew the offer late Wednesday citing government interference in the proposed deal.

“We went in different directions very rapidly,” said a source close to the ongoing negotiations, noting that only three hours earlier the two carmakers had been preparing to release a joint statement indicating that the Renault board had voted in favor of the proposal and would begin taking the necessary steps to complete a merger – a process expected to take 12 to 18 months.

Going into the negotiations, it was clear there would be some potential obstacles, notably finding a way to preserve Renault’s long-standing relationship with Japanese automakers Nissan and Mitsubishi. But, in the end, FCA formally pointed blame for the collapse of the deal at the French government that is Renault’s largest shareholder.

Breaking News!

“It has become clear that the political conditions in France do not currently exist for such a combination to proceed successfully,” FCA said in a statement.

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Renault Expected to Give Thumbs Up to FCA Marriage Proposal

Nissan upbeat, but cautious, according to report.

by on Jun.04, 2019

Any merger between FCA and Renault must protect France's hourly workforce, such as its Maubeuge plant, French government officials said.

Renault’s board will meet on Tuesday afternoon to pore over the merger proposal offered late last month by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and reports from Europe suggest the response will be a positive one.

Should the French automaker signal its approval it would surprise few, several observers told TheDetroitBureau.com, considering the two companies had discussed the idea of a full merger for more than a month before the plan became public.

Global News!

But there are some potential obstacles to be overcome, including the existing ties between Renault and its long-time alliance partner Nissan, as well as Mitsubishi which entered the alliance several years ago. But the two Japanese automakers also appear to be signaling cautious approval for the deal that would create the world’s third-largest automaker – and largest automotive group. (more…)

Auto Stocks Taking a Beating as Industry Prepares for Mexican Tariffs

Domestic, import automakers alike hammered by Trump plan.

by on Jun.03, 2019

GM imports more vehicles from Mexico than any other automakers, including the Chevy Silverado.

It’s a bear market, at least when it comes to automotive stocks, with Pres. Donald Trump’s planned tariffs on Mexican imports set to go into effect a week from today.

Last Friday, the president tweeted that he was prepared to enact a new 5% tariff on Mexican goods in an effort to pressure that country to stem illegal immigration across the southern border. Barring any resolution, Trump said that would continue to climb to 25% by October 1.

Beyond the Headlines!

Nearly a dozen manufacturers would quickly be forced to either raise prices on vehicles imported from Mexico and risk weakening sales, or absorb the tariffs and take a hit to their bottom lines. But even vehicles produced in the U.S. would face tariffs on imported parts and components, such as engines, wiring harnesses and body and interior trim, according to industry analysts.

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What Next for Fiat Chrysler and Renault?

Deal faces numerous obstacles; could take 18 months to complete.

by on May.28, 2019

Jeeps, like this new Gladiator pickup, are one of the potential prizes in the proposed merger.

The French government is weighing in on the proposed Fiat Chrysler-Renault merger plan and underscores the potential challenges the automotive merger faces before it can be completed.

Following four months of talks, FCA on Monday proposed a merger-of-equals with the larger of France’s two automakers, a plan expected to take up to 18 months to complete. Before that can happen, however, an assortment of obstacles will need to be overcome, among other things winning the blessings of the French government that holds a 15% stake in Renault.

Breaking News!

French Finance Minister Bruno le Maire told RTL radio on Tuesday that he will demand “four guarantees” from Renault before approving any merger, starting with “the preservation of industrial jobs and sites in France.”

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FCA Lays Out Plan for “Transformative Merger” with Groupe Renault

Move would create 3rd-largest global automaker; 1st if factoring in Alliance partners Nissan, Mitsubishi.

by on May.27, 2019

Fiat Chrysler Chief Executive Officer Mike Manley originally approached Renault over much more limited plans, such as platform sharing.

After extensive, secret negotiations, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has laid out a plan to merge with the largest of France’s two automakers, Groupe Renault, a move that would create the world’s third-largest motor vehicle manufacturer, with annual sales of 8.7 million vehicles – and a clear number one if factoring in the volumes of Renault’s current Alliance partners, Nissan and Mitsubishi.

Both FCA and Renault have openly sought new partnerships over the past decade to both expand their geographic bases and fill in gaps in their product and technology portfolios. If, as expected, the proposed deal is completed, the new organization will have a more well-rounded global presence, with FCA bringing to the table its Jeep SUV and Ram pickup brands. Renault, among other things, provides a growing range of electric vehicles and an aggressive autonomous vehicle develop program.

Breaking News!

Over the past decade, FCA has repeatedly said it was looking for a partner, with names like General Motors and Volkswagen on its list. But while those were seen as unsolicited proposals, talks between the Italian-American automaker and Renault have been underway since early this year. And though the French automaker early Monday said that its “Board of Directors will meet this morning to discuss this proposal,” it is expected that this is largely a formality.

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Fiat Chrysler and Renault Poised to Form New Alliance

Pairing would form third-largest automaker.

by on May.26, 2019

Could another sign change be in Fiat Chrysler's future?

What appeared to be a two-horse race to partner up with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. is now just down to one – Renault SA – with a deal potentially announced as early as Monday.

The deal, which was reported first by Bloomberg News, not only provides some each company with a strong ally to shore weak areas, it also opens the door to a potential deal with the Renault Nissan Alliance.

Global News!

In late March, FCA was linked to talks with Renault as well as another French automaker, Peugeot, about a tie-up of some sort. While a deal was never consummated with either automaker at the, it appears discussions with Renault have been fruitful. (more…)

Could Tesla’s High-Flying Ride on Wall Street be Ready to Come Crashing Down?

Shares head towards $200 for first time since 2016, as key analyst warns $10 is possible.

by on May.21, 2019

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has plenty to worry about as investors turn bearish on its stock.

After sliding to its lowest level since December 2016 on five days of losses, Tesla stock fell to its lowest level in nearly 30 months, at just above $200 — and one key analyst, Morgan Stanley’s Adam Jonas, warns Tesla could see the stock plunge to just $10 a share.

Not much has gone right for the California automotive upstart in recent months, starting with word that first-quarter sales had fallen well short of expectations. Its unexpectedly deep, $702 million loss for the quarter didn’t help. And the situation only grew worse when CEO Elon Musk last week ordered a “hardcore” belt-tightening covering “literally every payment that leaves our bank account.” Then, the National Transportation Safety Board weighed in, blaming a fatal March 2018 crash on Tesla’s much-ballyhooed Autopilot system.

Breaking News!

Even where the automaker appeared to pull off a coup, topping substantially what it had expected to raise with last month’s combination of stock and debt offerings, Musk told employees in an e-mail, that the $2.7 billion Tesla brought in “actually only gives us about 10 months at the Q1 burn rate to achieve breakeven!”

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Daimler Prepares Cost-Cutting Plans for New Chief Kallenius

New takes over for Zetsche.

by on May.21, 2019

Daimler AG Chairman Dieter Zetsche is on his way out into retirement. He will be succeeded by Ola Kallenius.

Daimler AG’s new chief executive is preparing a plan that would slash the company’s administrative costs by 20%, according to a report in Germany’s top business newspaper Handelsblatt.

Ola Kallenius, who will take over for Dieter Zetsche this week, has asked for recommendations due to the uncertainty facing car makers, the paper said. Central administration costs are to be cut by about 20%, the paper said, adding billions of euros in efficiency potential would be targeted.

Business News!

Daimler declined to comment on the Handelsblatt article, which appeared as Daimler was preparing for its annual shareholders meeting in Berlin. (more…)


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