Markets love certainty, and with the news of the Tories sizeable majority hitting the airwaves last night, markets around the world reacted. And not surprisingly, so did our industry bodies. With both the SMMT and the NFDA issuing statements today, congratulating the Tories and hoping we can get back to business. Certainly a majority of this size will allow the Prime Minister to negotiate confidently with the European Union, and not have to worry about any disruptive tendencies in his party, be they Leave or Remain. And many experts think that this has effectively ruled out a hard Brexit, because anything in between will be much easier to negotiate.

It is certain that the election will have an effect on our industry, though perhaps not quite so much of an effect as it did on The Car Centre in Petersfield. Rather imaginatively, they have been used as a polling station in the past and so it proved again this time. I mean, if you want to get your footfall stats up for the month I can think of no better way. And upon reflection, I am surprised that not more dealers have tried it. The article also referred to a White Horse pub that performed a similar service. You’ve got five years to plan it if you think it is a good strategy.
While the world certainly liked the look of our election result, there was also cautious optimism about Trump’s trade deal with China. Though analysts were quick to point out that it is actually quite limited in scale. As far as the automotive industry is concerned, a much more worrying statistic is that the Chinese market has just had its 17th month of decline in a row. And when you are as big as they are, it has a massive global impact.
Trump also tweeted congratulations last night, and told us to get ready for the “biggest trade deal ever” which is encouraging. Though precisely how this deal will play out remains to be seen. Plenty to keep us busy over the next two years or so, I am sure.
There’s not much more than two weeks left of this decade now. Quite a sobering thought. I remember at the turn of the millennium thinking what a milestone. It is difficult to think that it was 20 years ago. Still, let’s hope we can enter the New Year with confidence and a 2020 vision both for the UK and for the automotive industry.
Have a great weekend, might be time to apply for that European passport?
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