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Forthcoming Job Losses

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Jaguar sales in the UK were down over 20% last month compared to July '06. So far this year, the drop has been 19.5%.

Since the US is by far their largest export market, it's pretty unlikely that with Sterling at $2.00 business is booming there .... especially now that debt-laden American consumers are getting 'topped-out' to use a local phrase.

The $550 million loss expected this year by Ford (see article below) could turn out to be a lot bigger. Recent news reports that Ford were in talks with private equity firms for a quick disposal have dried up ...... another victim of the recent credit crunch?

Jaguar losses grow

25th January 2007

Although Ford does not declare Jaguar's financial performance, The Detroit News has reported that the brand lost more than $715 million last year. According to an internal analysis outlined to executives, the British luxury marque is expected to lose more than $550 million this year, more than $300 million next year and is not expecting a profit for several years.

This comes at a time when the recovery strategy is just starting. The marque is turning away from the mass market models to concentrate on building sport coupes and saloons. Jaguar may not officially be for sale, but new Ford CEO Alan Mulally has made it clear he is taking a hard look at the marque.

Ford bought Jaguar in 1989 for $2.5 billion. Since then, Ford has invested about $10 billion in the brand, including a $1.2 billion rescue in 2005. Up until two years ago, Jaguar was producing about 120,000 automobiles a year at three plants in Britain. Jaguar closed one factory, Browns Lane, in 2005 and has transformed another into a consolidated operation with its sister brand, Land Rover.

Quality is another area where Jaguar has shown improvement. For the past three years, the brand has received consistently high marks for customer satisfaction and scored in the top five of J.D. Power and Associates' closely watched annual survey of initial quality, which measures customer satisfaction in the first 90 days of ownership.

Source: Detroit News (www.detnews.com)

Another potential fall-out in my view is Debenhams - their summer trading has been crap (Mrs Detached who bought some massively discounted clothes - 70% off !!!- in our local branch last week heard from the shop assistant that the summer stock was almost a complete write-off ......

With all the recent reports that they are having troubles refinancing their £2bn debt, could Debenhams be heading into choppy waters?

Were both Jaguar and Debenham to announce mass job losses in the next few months, I wonder what would happen to the famed 'feel good' factor .... the main driver of the great HPI/MEW/BTL economy

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