For Immediate Release
Chicago, IL - July 17, 2015 - Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include the General Motors Co. ( GM ), Tesla Motors, Inc. ( TSLA ), Ford Motor Co. ( F ), Toyota Motor Corporation ( TM ) and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. ( HMC ).
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Here are highlights from Thursday's Analyst Blog:
Auto Stock Roundup
The past week was a mixed one for the auto sector as several positive developments, along with the improvement in the overall market, combined with numerous recalls and a few adverse occurrences. General Motors Co. ( GM ) announced a $1.4 billion investment in a plant in Texas, while Tesla Motors, Inc. ( TSLA ) hired a new vice president for North American sales.
Ford Motor Co. ( F ) reported strong first-half 2015 sales figures in Europe. Toyota Motor Corporation ( TM ) also reported Europe sales, which were in line with the year-ago level. Meanwhile, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. ( HMC ) agreed to a $24 million settlement related to charges of discrimination in car loan offerings.
(Read last to last week's recap here: Auto Stock Roundup for Jul 9, 2015 )
Recap of the Week's Most Important Stories
1. Honda's American financing division - American Honda Finance Corporation ("AHFC") - has reached an agreement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ("CFPB") and the Department of Justice ("DOJ") to settle accusations of overcharging interest on car loans from minority buyers.Per the agreement, the company will create a $24 million fund to compensate customers considered entitled by the CFPB and the DOJ.
AHFC will also work with Honda and Acura dealers as well as the CFPB and the DOJ to adjust its loan pricing programs. Further, Honda will contribute $1 million to a consumer financial education program (read more: Honda Settles Charges of Discrimination in Lending Practices ).
2. General Motors announced plans to invest $1.4 billion in the Arlington Assembly Plant in Texas. This is the largest investment in a single plant by the automaker in the U.S. this year. The automaker will add a new paint shop and body shop, and upgrade the general assembly area as well. The company will start the construction work this summer and expects to complete the process in the next three years (read more: General Motors to Invest $1.4B in Arlington Assembly Plant ).
3. Ford recorded a 15.8% year-over-year rise in sales to 126,800 vehicles in its 20 traditional European markets in Jun 2015. With this, Ford's monthly sales marginally surpassed the industry sales growth of 15.1%. In the first six months of 2015, the company's sales increased 10.5% to 668,800 vehicles, also cruising ahead of the industry sales growth of 8.6% (read more: Ford's Europe Sales Rise in June and First Half of 2015 ).
4. Toyota reported sales of 451,000 Toyota and Lexus vehicles in Europe in the first half of 2015, down 0.2% from 451,802 units in the first half of 2014. The company's market share in the continent stood at 4.6% for this period. Toyota's sales in the continent benefited from improved sales in Western Europe as well as Central Europe. However, this was partially offset by a decline in sales in Eastern Europe (read more: Toyota 1H15 Sales Declines 0.2% to 451K in Europe ).
5. Tesla hired Ganesh Srivats as the vice president for North American sales. Srivats has previously worked at British luxury fashion house, Burberry, as a business development manager from 2004 to 2007 and in various executive roles, including senior vice president, from 2009 onward. He has been working at Tesla from May 2015 (read more: Tesla's North American Sales VP a Former Burberry Executive ).
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