Finance and Insurance Newsletter

F&I revenue growth slows in Q2 for some major dealership groups

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 23, 2014
Of the four publicly traded new-car dealership groups that have reported second-quarter results, only one has posted a higher rate of growth in F&I revenue per vehicle retailed than it did a year ago. Lithia Motors today reported average F&I revenue per vehicle of $1,206, up 9.4 percent from the 2013 period. Last year at this time, its per-vehicle F&I revenue rose 4.4 percent from the year-earlier period.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

N.Y. Times story on subprime offers feds ammunition

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 23, 2014
A withering account of subprime auto lending in Sunday's New York Times reinforces bad stereotypes about used-car dealers, smears subprime lenders and their investors, takes out of context an increase in delinquencies and loan losses from record lows, and provides ammunition to auto finance industry critics in Washington.... Read More »

 

Smarter consumers, fewer defaults

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 23, 2014
The National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers and Ally Financial are partnering to promote financial literacy in stores. The program was unveiled at NAMAD's annual conference on July 9 in Miami. This is an excerpt from the July 14 AutoNews Now newscast.... Read More »

 

Some worry about F&I product regs, but not Jackson

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 23, 2014
AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson says that unlike some in the retail industry, he's not worried the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau could have plans to impose stricter monitoring of financing for F&I products.... Read More »

 

Capital One, Huntington target more prime loans

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 23, 2014
Capital One continues to push aggressively in auto loans while other big banks, such as Chase and Wells Fargo, have slowed auto loan growth amid accelerating competition, especially in prime-risk lending. Regional powerhouse Huntington Bank, based in Columbus, Ohio, is also pursuing much bigger volumes in prime auto loans... Read More »

 

AutoNation preps for online sales

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 21, 2014
By Christmas, AutoNation Inc. customers will be able to initiate a vehicle purchase online.... Read More »

 

Credit union scraps ad campaign slamming rate markup

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 16, 2014
A Florida credit union is canceling an advertising and social media campaign that hit at a retail industry sore spot -- dealer reserve. The “Expose the Truth” campaign was scheduled to run through August and described dealer reserve as an unfair trade practice most consumers don't know about.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Credit union ads highlight misperceptions of dealer reserve

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 16, 2014
A Florida credit union's ad campaign beating up dealers and auto lenders for “rate markups” is hard to look at, but dealers and lenders should check it out to see what they're up against in terms of public perception and in case the approach catches on in other states.... Read More »

 

Chase, Wells Fargo ease auto loan growth

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 16, 2014
Two of the biggest banks in auto lending are growing their loan business but at a slower pace. Chase Auto Finance and Wells Fargo Dealer Services both reported a slower rate of growth in auto loans and leases so far this year versus the clip they were on at the end of 2013.... Read More »

 

Q&A

CFPB scrutiny could force fixed F&I prices

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 16, 2014
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is sending signals it may be interested in scrutinizing the value of F&I products purchased by consumers, relative to the cost of the products for dealers, according to David Bafumo, president of FNI Inc. in Cary, N.C., a firm that consults with auto lenders and dealerships.... Read More »

 

Sonic bets new plan will transform automotive retailing

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 14, 2014
After more than five years of internal work and external carping, Sonic Automotive Inc. will roll out a bet-the-farm change in how it sells cars late this month at a Toyota store in Charlotte, N.C.... Read More »

 

Sales staff gets more responsibility, higher pay

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 14, 2014
Sonic Automotive began preparing its staff for the transition to its One Sonic-One Experience initiative years ago when it launched its playbooks, or guides for how to sell used cars, new cars, finance and insurance products and so on.... Read More »

 

Shoppers wary of dealer loans

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 14, 2014
Although most car buyers finance their vehicles through dealerships, the vast majority don't plan to do so while in the online-research phase of shopping.... Read More »

 

Dealer: Customers judge a service contract by its cover

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 14, 2014
For auto retailers, having factory-backed finance and insurance products to sell sometimes makes all the difference.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Why buy-here, pay-here is losing some turf

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
More consumers are passing up offers from buy-here, pay-here stores in favor of cheap financing by some franchised new-car dealerships, one giant used-car retailer says.... Read More »

 

Chrysler Group's lease rate rises; Dodge Double-Up builds traffic

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
Chrysler Group's lease penetration rose sharply in June, the company said, as the innovative Dodge Double-Up short-term lease program passed its halfway point.... Read More »

 

Dealers are responding well to flat fees, BMO Harris says

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
BMO Harris Bank in Chicago says its ties with dealers haven’t suffered since it switched from dealer reserve to a flat fee to compensate dealerships for arranging auto loans.... Read More »

 

Car loans are riskier, but problems aren't rising, regulator reports

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
The Office of the Comptroller of Currency fretted in a recent report that hotter competition is driving auto lenders to accept more risk in terms of lower approval standards, higher loan-to-value ratios, longer terms and more loans to riskier customers.... Read More »

 

Roaring Westlake on prowl for its next lion

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
Now that Don Hankey has turned 70, after more than 40 years of building Westlake Financial Services out of the used-car department of his family's struggling Ford dealership, he is turning his attention to recruiting a successor.... Read More »

 

Loan application blasts could be a blow to dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
Technology makes it easy for finance and insurance managers to blast credit applications across a wide spectrum of lenders, called shotgunning, rather than matching the right consumer with the right lender. Some dealership groups and auto finance experts say shotgunning can harm a dealership's relationships with customers and lenders alike.... Read More »

 

Stuart leaves VW Credit to become CEO of TD Auto

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 9, 2014
Andrew Stuart, the CEO of captive finance arm Volkswagen Credit, is leaving to become TD Bank's auto-lending chief.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Don't do much leasing? Better bone up

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 2, 2014
Leasing's not just for luxury brands anymore. It's spreading to mass-market brands too, experts say.... Read More »

 

Dealer-backed laws limit captives' power to compel sales of branded F&I products

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 2, 2014
Several states have adopted laws that limit the power of automakers' captive finance companies and preferred lenders to compel dealerships to sell F&I products backed by the factory or a specific vendor.... Read More »

 

Courting F&I business: A primer for lenders

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 2, 2014
What do F&I managers really want from auto lenders? Availability, for one thing, says F&I veteran Sarah Richard Denton.... Read More »

 

Hyundai Capital offers free credit scores

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 2, 2014
Hyundai Capital America has begun rolling out a program to offer customers free access to their FICO credit scores, starting with Hyundai and Kia buyers who get their loans through the brands' “College Grad” incentive programs.... Read More »

 

Special Report
Fewer bosses, Disney savvy, $2 idea lift stores

Fewer bosses, Disney savvy, $2 idea lift stores

A Chrysler Group dealership chain is stripping away layers of management to sell cars faster. A Chevrolet-Cadillac store is enchanting customers through Disney training. Mon., July 21
» Watch the Video
     
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