Blog: Dave LeggettFord reflections

Dave Leggett | 15 September 2006

It's been yet another tough day for Ford, but we knew what might be coming. Is it enough? Time will tell. But we have been here before with Ford and Ford has come through before. In fact, some sixty years ago Ford turned to a man from the aviation industry to sort a mess out. And he did. A history lesson from Karl Ludvigsen is to be found here and Ford people, especially, might be in need of some refuge from the constant barrage of Way Forward news and rent-a-pundit saturation coverage going on currently.

There's no shortage of investment bank and stockbroker analysts sticking the boot into Ford, naturally. They are not keen on carmakers with red ink and sagging stock, but some of them (not all of them by any means, there are some who I have great respect for) are so predictable. Their underlying message seems to be simple: just give it up and let the Japanese/Chinese get on with it.

What are people actively engaged in that unfashionable area of economic activity in the West that involves actually making things and trying to turn an under-pressure manufacturing firm around supposed to make of comments like this:

"Ford has 87,000 hourly workers. If 86,000 were to leave, the market would be ecstatic," said Bradley Rubin, an analyst with BNP Paribas in New York, who added that white-collar reductions are also high on his wish list. "This is what people are hoping to see."

Was that Bud Fox talking? (For those with memories like mine, it's a film reference - 'Wall Street'.) I hope he's a young and eager pup in real life, just like Charlie Sheen, so that we can cut some slack.

Very good article on this subject in the Detroit News recently (below link). It's enough to make you want to see Ford go private again.

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