It’s a good time to be a car buyer.
Dealers are offering the biggest discounts since the Great Recession, and a combination of historically low gas prices and improvements in fuel efficiency mean consumers can upgrade from cars to SUVs without forking over a huge chunk of their paycheck to gas stations each month.
But the story is entirely different for U.S. carmakers and dealers. Although the auto industry has enjoyed record sales recently, there are early signs that the party could soon be over.
And that could spell trouble for President Trump’s economic agenda. Although he has celebrated automakers General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, and Toyota for announcing new jobs at U.S. factories, these manufacturers could soon be caught in a bit of a contradiction, with weaker earnings ahead leading to furloughs or even job cuts if they’re forced to cut production.