Auto industry hopes to gain from tax rebates

Radio commentary
Edward Lapham is the editor of Automotive News

Aug. 28 - What are you going to do with your tax rebate? Are you going to buy a car or truck?

Everywhere you look these days there are ads and commercials for businesses that want you to spend your tax rebate with them.

The Bush administration isn't playing favorites. It just wants you to spend it, hoping that the influx of cash will stimulate the sagging economy.

Automakers, suppliers and dealers hope that some of the new-found bounty will find its way into new car and truck sales.

But the rebates are unlikely to make much of a difference. Experts still expect new car sales this year to hit between 16 and 16.5 million units.

Not bad, but not enough of a jolt to turbo charge the economy.

You can reach Edward Lapham at elapham@crain.com

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