Finance and Insurance Newsletter

VIDEO: Lawmakers back NADA in battle with CFPB

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2015

Two lawmakers have introduced a bipartisan bill to nullify a 2014 bulletin issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.... Read More »

Dealers missing out on digital F&I sales, study finds

11:30 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2015

Consumers want F&I product information online rather than all-at-once at the end of their vehicle purchases, a new study finds. The survey by MakeMyDeal indicates that consumers want to learn about F&I products online before entering a new-vehicle store.... Read More »

JIM HENRY

BLOG: Auto finance critic Warren stands firm on CFPB dealership oversight

11:15 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2015

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is once again calling for direct regulation of auto dealerships by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.... Read More »

Asbury, Sonic see below-average F&I revenue at new-initiative stores

11:30 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2015

Two of the nation's biggest publicly traded dealership groups said early, small-scale results from their nontraditional dealerships -- either stand-alone used-vehicle stores or ones that use techniques such as no-haggle pricing -- showed below average F&I revenue per vehicle retailed.... Read More »

Some auto lenders let others pursue volume

11:15 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2015

Some auto lenders are choosing not to chase volume. Consumer Portfolio Services and PNC Bank are consciously passing up volume to protect profits and their credit standards. Wells Fargo made a similar statement this month.... Read More »

Q&A

New Black Book exec looks to help dealers close loans, leases faster

11:15 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2015

Barrett Teague, Black Book's new vice president of lender solutions, says dealership F&I managers are never far from his mind. In part that's because he's been an F&I manager himself. Teague, 43, joined Black Book on April 6. His new role is to work with lenders, but how lenders use Black Book data also has a direct effect on dealerships, he says.... Read More »

Dealership gross profits see bigger impact from F&I

12:00 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2015

The average dealership gained more from F&I last year, even though retailers' overall sales penetration for products such as extended service contracts and GAP dropped a fraction of a percentage point. On average, F&I accounted for 39.6 percent of gross profit for new- and used-vehicle departments combined in 2014, up from 38.8 percent in 2013, according to the 2014 NADA Data report.... Read More »

JIM HENRY

BLOG: Women in automotive seek more peers

12:15 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2015

A lot of dealer principals and general managers swear by their female salespeople and F&I managers and wish they had more. But in the business world at large, auto industry careers for women are a “best-kept secret.”... Read More »

Wells Fargo, Chase adopt different lending approaches

12:00 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2015

Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase, two of the biggest banks in auto finance, adopted opposite lending strategies in the first quarter. At Wells Fargo Dealer Services, total originations of auto loans and leases were lower compared with the year-earlier period, for the second quarter in a row and by a larger margin. Chase Auto Finance reported its 14th consecutive quarter of year-over-year increases in originations.... Read More »

Penske targets 'I' in F&I to boost per-vehicle revenue

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 13, 2015

Penske Automotive Group Inc. is refining its training process on insurance product sales to boost overall finance and insurance revenues.... Read More »

Some dealers prep for flat fees

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 13, 2015

Dealer Mike Thompson believes he might soon lose the ability to make a healthy profit from finance reserves. His concern is well-founded. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has been pressuring auto lenders for the past few years to stop allowing dealerships to set their own reserve amounts.... Read More »

JIM HENRY

BLOG: Lenders' outcry against CFPB 'narratives' is justified

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2015

It's no wonder auto lenders cried foul last month when the CFPB announced its plan to begin posting consumers' first-person tales of their grievances with auto loans later this year.... Read More »

Q&A

Mercedes’ captive boosts dealership training on branded F&I products

11:00 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2015

Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ U.S. insurance unit is gearing up to train more dealership F&I managers to sell its First Class-branded F&I products. Lease penetration is high for Mercedes-brand vehicles, so the insurance unit specializes in F&I products suitable for lease customers, such as prepaid maintenance and coverage for excess wear and tear.... Read More »

FICO pilot holds promise for auto financing

11:45 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2015

The results of a pilot program between Fair Isaac Corp. and 12 big credit-card companies could ultimately help dealerships get auto loans approved for so-called thin files -- that is, customers with little or no credit history.
... Read More »

Low rates will continue to help auto sales, financing in 2015, experts say

11:45 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2015

Interest rates should remain low for the rest of 2015, helping auto dealerships sell vehicles, experts say. Low interest rates and longer auto-loan terms have largely offset higher transaction prices the past few years, keeping increases in monthly payments to a minimum.... Read More »

CarMax finance arm won’t become major subprime player

11:30 am U.S. ET | April 8, 2015

CarMax’s finance arm will continue its subprime lending test and might expand it in the future. But the unit won’t become a “full player” in that space, says company CEO Tom Reedy. CarMax Auto Finance will continue to originate loans under the test at its current rate of 5 percent of subprime vehicle sales or a little less than 2 percent of overall loan originations.... Read More »

Feds put add-on products in their cross hairs

11:00 am U.S. ET | April 1, 2015

The Federal Trade Commission has set its sights on what it calls add-on products: F&I products sold at dealerships such as anti-theft etching or biweekly payments. “The cases we brought today were the first two -- but not the last,” Jessica Rich, director of the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection, said during a conference call on March 26. She was discussing a crackdown, dubbed “Operation Ruse Control,” on fraudulent dealership practices by authorities in the U.S.... Read More »

CFPB keeps wary eye out for subprime-lending abuses

11:00 am U.S. ET | April 1, 2015

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sees the combination of easier credit, a rise in credit losses from historic lows and longer terms in subprime auto loans as an “emerging” risk worth keeping an eye on, said Steven Antonakes, deputy director.... Read More »

NYC aims to remove dealers as middlemen on used-car loans

11:00 am U.S. ET | April 1, 2015

The City of New York is campaigning to remove dealer reserve from used-vehicle financing. And it's enlisting lenders' help to do it.... Read More »

JIM HENRY

BLOG: No such thing as 'little' lies on credit apps

11:00 am U.S. ET | April 1, 2015

The Federal Trade Commission served up a forceful reminder last week that inflating a customer's income on a credit application isn't just a little white lie, even if it's intended to “help” the customer.... Read More »

Ally touts dealership camaraderie in new ad campaign

2:44 pm U.S. ET | March 31, 2015

Ally Financial is touting the camaraderie it has with dealerships in a new ad campaign that puts an emphasis on storytelling.... Read More »

Ex-dealership staffers face prison

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 30, 2015

Several former sales staffers at a Birmingham, Ala., Nissan store face federal prison time as part of a federal crackdown on fraudulent practices in car dealerships.... Read More »

JIM HENRY

BLOG: If dealers don't weigh in, they can't gripe

12:30 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2015

Dealers have a chance right now to weigh in on what they like and don’t like about their lenders, and they shouldn’t miss the opportunity.
... Read More »

Dealer groups charge CFPB is unresponsive

12:00 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2015

Dealer trade groups are asking members to seek help from their elected representatives to prod the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau into responding to a lender study released last fall that was highly critical of its method of determining discrimination in auto finance.... Read More »

Lenders raise red flags over CFPB plan to publish consumer complaints

12:00 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2015

Auto lenders are lining up to oppose the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s plan to publish consumer complaints with financial services providers on its website.... Read More »

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