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Jamie LaReau

Retail / F&I reporter
Address: 1155 Gratiot Ave.
48207-2997 Detroit, Mich.
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Phone: 313-446-1637
E-Mail: jlareau@crain.com
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Recent authored articles

NADA Data shows dealer profits eroding

New-vehicle dealerships sold about the same number of new vehicles through June this year as they did a year earlier, but dealers are making less money on them, an NADA midyear report says.

Chief Economist Szakaly will leave NADA for health system

Steven Szakaly, chief economist for the National Automobile Dealers Association, is leaving the group early next month to run data analytics and consumer insights for a major health system.

Sonic issues earnings warning because of hurricanes

Sonic Automotive lowered its estimated third-quarter results because of devastating storm damage, but kept its full-year forecast unchanged.

Penske hiring process adds automation, phone screening

Penske Automotive Group has reduced its turnover rate across the company by 3 percentage points over the past year with big changes to its hiring process.

Car dealer, pro gambler Billy Walters reports to prison

Mega car dealer Billy Walters is now in federal prison for insider trading. The Federal Bureau of Prisons website lists him as an inmate at a minimum security federal prison camp in Pensacola, Fla.

NADA eyes beefed-up convention security after Vegas shooting

The National Automobile Dealers Association is reviewing security for its convention to take place in Las Vegas in March in light of the mass shooting there.

How Gen Z will buy F&I

Generation Zers are nothing like their millennial predecessors, experts say. As customers, they will be more technologically familiar and transparency-conscious. As employees, they will be competitive more than collaborative.

NADA puts Texas dealer Charlie Gilchrist in line to be 2019 chairman

The National Automobile Dealers Association chose Texas dealer Charlie Gilchrist to be its 2018 vice chairman, putting him in line to be chairman in 2019. Vice Chairman Wes Lutz, will succeed current Chairman Mark Scarpelli.

Penske warns of storms' hit to earnings

UPDATED: 9/28/17 3:16 pm ET - adds details, corrected

Penske Automotive Group could face a $6 million pretax profit decline as a result of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.

Shooting injures 3 at Ohio BMW dealership

A man began shooting inside a Cleveland-area BMW dealership Thursday. Three people -- including two police officers -- were injured. Authorities are investigating.

Cox Automotive makes two key leadership changes

The head of Cox Automotive's auction arm Manheim is moving to a new role in the company and is being replaced by a veteran Manheim executive.

Skipping background checks could be costly

Conducting criminal background checks on potential hires is a best practice, experts say. Yet many dealers skip them. Why?

Wanna sell cars? No, job seeker study finds

A Cox study found job seekers' interest in working at a dealership jumps when told they won't have to sell cars, while most dealers don't have a staffing strategy.

Irma ravages dealer's reputation

Florida dealer Ed Napleton wound up in a social media storm after Irma, blasted for parking cars where evacuees wanted to. Here's his side of the story.

Florida dealers clearing debris, opening doors

Three days after Hurricane Irma tore across Florida, some dealers remain in the dark, but most are clearing debris and reopening for business.

Dealers wait for power, people to return after Irma

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Florida dealers are scrambling to assess damage and reopen. But first they need to find their employees.

Fast gains for dealership's slower process

Porsche of Ann Arbor is switching up its F&I process to make it easier on customers and the finance team. The results are higher per-vehicle profits, happier customers and more time to ensure paperwork is legally compliant.

Skipping background checks could be costly

Conducting criminal background checks on potential hires is a best practice, experts say. Yet many dealers skip them. Why?

Ex-NADA President Brady joins Kerrigan Advisors

Former NADA President Phil Brady has joined dealership buy-sell firm Kerrigan Advisors.

A powerhouse in powersports

Aaron Zeigler grew frustrated with the service he received at a western Michigan powersports dealership. So he bought the store and built it into a powerful revenue stream.

When disaster strikes, experience helps

Big auto retail groups are counting on well-honed disaster protocols and risk-management efforts to get their stores and their employees through the worst of Harvey.

Sonic exec Jeff Dyke and team deliver relief supplies, reopen stores

Sonic executive Jeff Dyke and five employees drove 250 miles from Dallas into devastated Houston, carrying truckloads of supplies for those in need.

'If the culture is right, people are happy': Training goes beyond the auto industry

Most dealers pay for training. Aaron Zeigler sells it to outsiders.

First responders turn to OnStar

GM's OnStar helped 911 and the American Red Cross in their emergency-response efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

OnStar helps local emergency groups respond to Harvey

GM's OnStar has stepped in to help 911 and the American Red Cross in their emergency-response efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.