Detroit's big three in the slow lane AT FIRST glance it appears to be heartening news for Motown: this week, General Motors reaffirmed its earnings targets for this year, while Ford, in the midst of a turnaround under the founder's heir, William Clay Ford, said it expects to beat its targets. Scratch beneath the surface, however, and the picture is murkier. In both cases, it is the firms' financial-services divisions (which, among other things, lend customers the money to buy their cars), that are bailing out the core carmaking business. The third of Detroit's big three—Chrysler, part of DaimlerChrysler—is being weighed down by its shareholding in Mitsubishi, the only Japanese volume carmaker that is losing money. Mitsubishi, number four among Japanese car firms, has been mired in a cover-up scandal over faulty parts. Meanwhile, Japan's number one firm, Toyota, continues to gain on all of the Big Three, even in their home market.
What Bankrupted Detroit: China? Or Robots? - The Atlantic We know that, unlike most defeats, Detroit's bankruptcy has a thousand fathers -- everything from mismanaged pension funds to interest rate swaps gone the wrong way to years of racial animus that hollowed out the core of an already too-sprawling metropolis. But the fundamental problem of late has been the city's depleted population: More than a quarter of its residents leaving town between 2000 and 2010. That's a function of bad city services and urban blight, but it's also because it's hard to make a living there. You can see that reflected in the chart above. Cookies are Not Accepted - New York Times “The auto industry supports one of every 10 jobs in the United States,” Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm of Michigan wrote in a CNN.com plea for a bailout of Detroit’s Big Three.
Detroit Race Riot (1967) The Intersection of 12th Street and Clairmount, Saturday, July 23, 1967 Image Courtesy of the Detroit Free Press Image Ownership: Public Domain The Detroit Race Riot in Detroit, Michigan in the summer of 1967 was one of the most violent urban revolts in the 20th century. Detroit: Disappearing City? FORTY PERCENT OF Detroit today is considered virtually “unoccupied.” The administration of Mayor Dave Bing is trying to figure out how to move the remaining residents of these areas out, in the name of “rightsizing” the city. Of course he hasn’t revealed any specifics — and the devil is in the details! Residents are wary: without the money to relocate people and the services needed, it’s just another round of displacing the urban poor. Detroit is often compared to New Orleans after Katrina or Haiti, although Chris Hedges’ description of Camden, New Jersey as a “City of Ruins” also comes to mind, “the poster child of post-industrial decay (and) a warning of what huge pockets of the United State could turn into” (The Nation, November 22, 2010,
5 trends to watch in Michigan's economy If the prognosticators are right, Michigan's still recovering economy is poised for another round of substantial growth by riding an expected banner year for auto sales. The nation's 10th largest state by population is still making up ground on real estate prices, average personal income and the level of education afforded to its key group of young workers. But the spillover effects of record annual auto sales should continue to boost jobs, especially for those who build homes, serve popular tourist communities and keep government offices running, according to state, business and academic experts. Rip-roaring auto sales will continue to soar to at least 18 million a year in the U.S for the next two years, forecasters from the U-M Research Seminar in Quantitative Economics say.
Effort to match Detroit workers' skills to jobs gets a boost Workforce training programs often have been the weak link in labor markets, with millions of dollars spent preparing people for jobs that don't exist and giving them skills that aren't in demand. That record has gotten better in Detroit in recent years, and now JPMorgan Chase is hoping to improve the performance even more. The bank, as part of its $100-million commitment to Detroit redevelopment efforts, has selected 22 workforce training professionals for a yearlong Detroit Workforce System Leadership Development Academy. Drawn from organizations including Focus: HOPE, Goodwill Industries, and the City of Detroit, the 22 participants will take part in retreats, seminars, and training programs to expose them to data findings and best practices culled from nationwide experience.
The Detroit Bankruptcy The Detroit Bankruptcy The City of Detroit’s bankruptcy was driven by a severe decline in revenues (and, importantly, not an increase in obligations to fund pensions). Depopulation and long-term unemployment caused Detroit’s property and income tax revenues to plummet. The state of Michigan exacerbated the problems by slashing revenue it shared with the city. The city’s overall expenses have declined over the last five years, although its financial expenses have increased. Detroit pays high price for arson onslaught Detroit — Arson is a raging epidemic in Detroit, destroying neighborhoods and lives as the city tries to emerge from bankruptcy. Even amid a historic demolition blitz, buildings burn faster than Detroit can raze them. Last year, the city had 3,839 suspicious fires and demolished 3,500 buildings, according to city records analyzed by The Detroit News. Burned homes scar neighborhoods for years: Two-thirds of those that caught fire from 2010-13 are still standing, records show. "Nothing burns like Detroit," said Lt. Joe Crandall, a Detroit Fire Department arson investigator, referring to the city's high rate of arson.
Nine Reasons Why Detroit Failed My hometown of Detroit has been studied obsessively for years by writers and researchers of all types to gain insight into the Motor City’s decline. Indeed, it seems to have become a favorite pastime for urbanists of all stripes. How could such an economic powerhouse, a uniquely American city, so utterly collapse? Most analysis tends to focus on the economic, social and political reasons for the downfall. One of my favorite treatises on Detroit is The Origins of the Urban Crisis by Thomas Sugrue, who argues that housing and racial discrimination practices put in place after World War II played a primary role in the decline of Motown. Tesla surpasses GM to become most valuable car company in US Forget Motor City. Silicon Valley now owns the most valuable car company in the US. Tesla, the loss-making electric luxury vehicle maker, became the most valuable car company in the US. When US markets closed on Monday the manufacturer was worth $51.54bn to second banana General Motors’ $50.22bn after an upgrade by analysts at Piper Jaffray.
Tech and innovation power Detroit's manufacturing revival Similar efforts are under way in Detroit to foster innovation and entrepreneurism. These include the Obama administration's manufacturing innovation institute, called Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow (LIFT), launched in January, and the philanthropic New Economy Initiative (NEI), an economic development initiative working to build a network of support for entrepreneurs and small businesses. "We don't support entrepreneurs directly, but the ecosystem that does," explained David Egner, executive director of NEI, which has raised $135 million to fund entrepreneurs and programs like LIFT.
A new Detroit: Can the Motor City come back? ONE of this week's big American news stories was the release of new Census data for the state of Michigan, which revealed that the city of Detroit underwent a stunning population decline between 2000 and 2010. Detroit shrank by 25% during the decade, and its population fell to its lowest level since 1910—before the era of Big Three dominance. The city seems to be locked in a death spiral. But could there be a light on the horizon? Bloomberg reports: Auto industry executives are trying to make Silicon Valley engineers feel at home in Detroit.