Finance and Insurance Newsletter

Sonic learns the importance of paperwork, staffing

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
In launching its One Sonic-One Experience initiative, Sonic Automotive had the technology, the store and the full attention of its top management committed to making it work. What it didn't have, in the finance and insurance office, were enough document specialists.... Read More »

 

Anderson named CEO at Exeter Finance

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
Subprime auto lender Exeter Finance Corp. named Thomas Anderson its CEO, succeeding Mark Floyd, who will continue to serve on the company's board of directors.... Read More »

 

Huntington, Fifth Third, Capital One target prime-risk auto loans

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
Some big banks in auto lending are responding to tougher competition by zeroing in on prime-risk loans. Huntington Bank and Fifth Third Bank are restricting lending to prime contracts only. In contrast, Capital One is controlling prime-risk costs as part of a broader lending strategy.... Read More »

 

JAMES B. TREECE

Why loan length doesn’t matter

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
There’s another reason not to fret over longer new-car loans: The numbers can be misleading.... Read More »

 

Consumer Portfolio grows, staffs up for tax-refund season

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
Consumer Portfolio Services increased auto originations 35 percent in the third quarter to $279.3 million, aided by a slowdown in subprime loans at competing lenders.... Read More »

 

Lithia expects flat per-unit F&I revenue through 2015

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
Lithia Motors expects average F&I revenue per vehicle retailed to stay flat through the rest of 2014 and 2015, at the current level of about $1,200 on a same-store basis. The retailer expects same-store average F&I revenue per unit of $1,202 in the third quarter.... Read More »

 

TrueCar offers upfront pricing on document fees, dealer-added accessories

11:46 am U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
TrueCar, bidding to increase transparency of vehicle transaction costs, said its 9,000 dealer franchisees agreed to reveal all vehicle accessory and nongovernmental document fees when guaranteeing prices to TrueCar shoppers... Read More »

 

Wells Fargo, Chase boost auto lending

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
Wells Fargo expects to keep its position as the No. 1 U.S. auto lender by volume as auto lenders report third-quarter results.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Visions of a paper-free auto finance world

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
What will auto finance look like in 2020? Chase Auto Finance exec Bill Jensen did some speculating recently at the Auto Finance Summit in Las Vegas.... Read More »

 

CFPB faces legal hurdle in regulating F&I products

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 15, 2014
It’s clear the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would like to increase regulation of what it calls “add-on” F&I products such as extended-service contracts and GAP. But it’s less clear whether the bureau can find the legal grounds to do it, a former CFPB official says.... Read More »

 

How to navigate the incentives maze

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 13, 2014
From cash rebates to discount financing to lease subvention deals, complex automaker incentive programs keep dealership F&I departments constantly on their toes to find car buyers the best deals. That vigilance is poised to become even more critical as manufacturers beef up offerings. The stakes for dealerships are high.... Read More »

 

Dealers to face more lender scrutiny

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 8, 2014
Dealerships can expect more scrutiny from more lenders -- possibly including new attention aimed at leases -- when the “larger participants” rule proposed last month by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is enacted, possibly by year end.... Read More »

 

Q&A

TD Auto Finance sheds stores, eschews subprime

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 8, 2014
TD Auto Finance has shed about 2,800 dealerships this year in its campaign to cut low-volume stores and concentrate on dealerships that send the most business. Many of the dealerships cut were independent, used-car stores.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Subprime is no runaway train

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 8, 2014
There it goes again, as Ronald Reagan might have said. The New York Times is still hammering a theme that subprime auto loans will endanger the U.S. economy in the way that subprime mortgages helped bring about the Great Recession.... Read More »

 

GM Financial has big role in GM master plan

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 8, 2014
GM Financial will have an oversized role in General Motors’ efforts to increase revenue, market share and customer loyalty in the U.S. and other mature markets through 2020, GM President Dan Ammann says. GM will rely more heavily on GM Financial in mature markets such as North America, Europe and Japan because it doesn’t expect much sales movement in those regions beyond cyclical ups and downs.... Read More »

 

Sonic to launch captive -- in a few years

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 6, 2014
Sonic Automotive plans to launch a captive finance arm, but the startup date is at least four years away.... Read More »

 

EDITORIAL

Hard-won upgrades

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 6, 2014
As a business, General Motors is arguably better situated and better run than it was back when it lost its investment-grade ratings. GM's bean counters can make a case for getting an extra rung or two on the credit ratings scale.... Read More »

 

U.S. charges 5 former dealer employees with loan fraud conspiracy in Ala.

7:38 am U.S. ET | Oct. 3, 2014
Five former Serra Nissan employees have been charged in Birmingham, Ala., in connection with an alleged conspiracy to fraudulently increase loan approvals and car sales, the FBI said in a statement.... Read More »

 

Ford Credit rolls out 75-month loans nationwide

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 1, 2014
Ford Motor Credit has joined the trend toward longer loans, rolling out 75-month terms nationwide starting today. The company previously had conducted a pilot program.... Read More »

 

Chrysler Capital lowers rate cap on dealer reserve

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 1, 2014
Chrysler Capital is cutting its maximum permissible dealer reserve to 175 basis points, or 1.75 percentage points, effective today. The previous maximum was 200 basis points. Chrysler Capital, which provides full-service financing to Chrysler Group dealerships, notified retailers of the change in a fax last week.... Read More »

 

Is it wise to keep putting the car before the cash?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 1, 2014
Dealerships can and should take some of the risk out of making spot deliveries, experts say.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Lenders must look through consumers' eyes

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 1, 2014
In the second of what's shaping up to be a series of attacks on subprime auto finance -- the first was in July -- The New York Times last week made a breathless page one story out of a years-old device: the vehicle starter interrupt.... Read More »

 

Q&A

F&I managers need intelligence, empathy -- and good training

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 1, 2014
Today’s all-out emphasis on regulatory compliance has led to the biggest change in F&I training in recent memory, says Robert Serum, a career educator in dealership operations. The biggest F&I hurdle, though, remains the same, he says: The need for dealerships to find the right person to head the department.... Read More »

 

JAMES B. TREECE

How to end predatory auto-loan practices

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 29, 2014
Americans won't abide companies that gouge minorities and other vulnerable consumers. By acting aggressively to adopt and publicize the NADA and AFSA solution, auto retailers and lenders can show they are determined to fight discrimination before the heavy hand of government steps in.... Read More »

 

Buyers snap up pricier models

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 29, 2014
Consumers in the United States are willingly paying more than ever for new vehicles, enticed by low interest rates, cheap leases and ubiquitous six-year loans that keep monthly payments affordable while the total price tag rises by thousands of dollars.... Read More »

 

Special Report
How #1 store scores with employees

How #1 store scores with employees

Texas dealer Greg May encourages staffers to provide input and solve problems on their own. Mon., October 20
» Watch the Video
     
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