Penske's Q1 Income Drops By Half as Virus Hits
Penske Automotive Group's first-quarter net income was cut nearly in half from a year earlier as shelter-in-place orders in the U.S. and dealership closures in other countries due to the coronavirus dented March sales. Revenue dropped 10 percent to $5.01 billion for the nation's second-largest new-vehicle retailer, as net income slid 48 percent to $51.5 million.
Source: Automotive News
A Massive Drop In Car Sales Sparks New Push in Congress to Aid the Auto Industry
A precipitous decline in car sales amid the deadly coronavirus outbreak has caught the attention of Capitol Hill, where some lawmakers are now urging Congress to authorize new aid for the auto industry. With consumers spending less, and factories nationwide shuttered or severely hamstrung, Democrats and Republicans largely representing the hard-hit, auto heavy-Midwest are leading an early push to persuade their colleagues to help manufacturers and suppliers as part of a future pandemic relief package. Absent that assistance, they warn that massive losses could leave workers unemployed and stall any economic recovery.
Source: The Washington Post
Congressional Leaders Tell Treasury That PPP Borrowers Should Be Entitled To Deductions
The IRS ruled that a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) borrower who spends PPP funds on normal business expenses cannot deduct those expenditures for federal tax purposes. But its position, which left many in congress wondering if the IRS missed the 335-page memo, may not be the last word. Today, a bipartisan group of congressional leaders formally alerted the Treasury Department that they “believe the position taken in the [IRS] Notice ignores the overarching intent of the PPP, as well as the specific intent of Congress to allow deductions in the case of PPP loan recipients.”
Next Round of Small Business Relief May Come With Fewer Strings Attached
Congress rushed to get hundreds of billions of dollars out the door to help small businesses amid a collapsing economy. Now lawmakers are preparing to fix the glitches in the next round. Banks have agreed to lend out more than $500 billion of the $670 billion allocated in the first phases of the small business aid package, known as the Paycheck Protection Program. But many employers are still complaining that the program’s hastily written rules are too stringent to help them stay afloat through the pandemic and keep their workers on the payroll. So a bipartisan group of lawmakers is plotting big changes as they prepare to consider another round of funding. Among the key proposals being considered in the House and Senate: lengthening the time that small businesses can spend the money; allowing them to use less of the aid on trying to retain employees and more for expenses like rent; and expanding the relief to larger companies.
GM Plans to Resume Production May 18 at 'Majority' of N.A. Operations
General Motors said it is planning to resume production at the majority of its North American plants on May 18 as it prepares operations amid the coronavirus pandemic. "Considerable planning is under way to restart operations in North America," the automaker said in its first-quarter report released Wednesday. "Based on conversations and collaboration with unions and government officials, GM is targeting to restart the majority of manufacturing operations on May 18 in the U.S. and Canada under extensive safety measures."
Source: Automotive News