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"With the bursting of the housing bubble and ensuing credit crunch, consumers have appreciably less wealth.

How Did the Housing "Bubble" Affect the Automotive Industry?

Mar. 22 SVSU Meeting Hosts Bernard Swiecki, Center for Automotive Research

March 14, 2010       Leave a Comment
By: Dave Rogers

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A co-author of a recent report analyzing on how the housing "bubble" has affected the automotive industry will speak here Monday, March 22.

Also expected to be discussed are automotive market trends and the industry's future, including facility retention and attraction by automotive communities like Bay City and Saginaw, at the upcoming meeting of local leaders.

Bernard Swiecki, Director of Market Analysis, Center for Automotive Research (CAR) from Ann Arbor will speak at the March 22 luncheon meeting of the Tri-County Economics Club at Saginaw Valley State University.

Mr. Swiecki is the Director of Market Analysis at the Center for Automotive Research (CAR), where he works in the Automotive Analysis Group. He joined the Ann Arbor-based CAR in 1994.

A recent report, co-authored by Mr. Swiecki along with Brett Smith and Richard Wallace, concluded:

"The housing bubble, starting in the early to mid-1990s and bursting in late 2006, created an enormous amount of wealth (both real and perceived). A large part of that wealth was spent by consumers buying more expensive vehicles than may have been possible without the wealth-effect created by the bubble.

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"With the bursting of the housing bubble and ensuing credit crunch, consumers had appreciably less wealth (again, real or perceived), and have been more restrained in their purchases - either buying less expensive vehicles or significantly delaying new car purchases.

"The collapse of the housing market has both direct and indirect effects on the specialty equipment market. Obviously, fewer vehicles sold means reduced opportunity for specialty equipment purchases. Equally important is the reduction in available credit for consumers as they look to buy specialty equipment for their existing vehicles."

Mr. Swiecki has written and managed research in a diverse array of automotive fields, including the economic contribution of the automotive industry, the dynamics of automaker and supplier interaction, the impact of information technology on the industry, and facility retention and attraction by automotive communities. Mr. Swiecki manages CAR's analysis of vehicle sales, production, and segmentation data.

In addition to other ongoing research, Mr. Swiecki has recently taken on the role of managing CAR's efforts to engage Asian and European automotive firms with the purpose of forming relationships between automotive industry participants in Michigan and abroad.

Mr. Swiecki has been involved in numerous consulting projects which have addressed topics such as automaker strategy, the adoption of new technologies by the automotive industry, and the market potential of new components and vehicles. He has authored numerous articles, as well as a monthly column on the automotive industry, regularly presents at conferences and industry events, and provides interviews to national and local media.

Mr. Swiecki is a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and Society of Automotive Analysts (SAA). He received his BA from the University of Michigan in 1998 and his MS from Eastern Michigan University in 2003.

Please register by March 15 at Email:; Call: (989) 964-4048 Online: ###

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Dave Rogers

Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
respected journalist/writer in and around Bay City.
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