Southern Man

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Cash for Clunkers

According to this report from the car folks at Edmunds, we (well, that is, the half of us who actually pay taxes) shelled out about $24,000 for every vehicle sold under the three-billion-dollar Cash for Clunkers program. That's only a little less than the average transaction price for a new car in August.

What does that say about government-managed car sales? Up next - government-managed health care!

UPDATE: The Empire Strikes Back.

ANOTHER UPDATE: chimes in with this chart (shown below) showing quarter-to-quarter changes in auto sales. Cash for Clunkers produces an enormous spike in Q3 sales relative to Q2; they speculate that C4C just stole sales from the future and predict a dramatic drop next quarter.

Note to the BusinessInsider chartmeisters; Southern Man is available on a contract basis to show you how to create graphs with complete titles.

AND ANOTHER UPDATE: As was widely predicted, C4C took lots of inexpensive used cars off the market, and now it's difficult to find an inexpensive used car - which means that C4C, as many well-intended but ill-concieved government programs do, hurt the poor more than it helped.

AND YET ANOTHER: Remember how C4C was supposed to help us out by improving the country's overall gas mileage? According to this report, the most frequent transaction in the program was one Ford F-150 for another, with a marginal increase in mileage.


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