An interesting article over at The Atlantic on the role of the automotive industry in our economic recovery.
But this time, cars are leading houses, thanks to a surprising source: older Americans. ”[Demand] is coming from an increased buying rate of people over 55,” McAlinden said, “which is scary because we don’t have a lot of repeat sales left in us.”
Young people are essentially locked out of the car market, just as they have been locked out of the housing market — and the labor market…
Young vs. old might not be the most important binary for cars right now. That would be rich vs. poor. The U.S. is beginning to look like the aristocratic auto market we’re used to seeing in Europe, McAlinden said, where the top 25 percent buys most of the new cars and the bottom 75 percent only buys old and used. ”Seventy-five percent of households here are relying on used cars, thinking ‘I hope that rich guy is done,’” he said.