Car sales plunge 27% to 45% year over year in France

My friend blbl sent me a report from Le Figaro, a french newspaper. Here's a quote:
En janvier, les constructeurs français ont particulièrement souffert. Les ventes de PSA Peugeot Citroën ont baissé de 27,4%, celles de Renault ont chuté de 32,7%. Inquiétant, sachant que l'Hexagone, premier marché des deux groupes, est clé pour eux tant en termes de volumes que de rentabilité. Preuve qu'il prévoit que la demande demeurera faible, PSA va mettre plus de 20.000 salariés de quatre usines au chômage partiel pendant une semaine en février ou en mars pour réduire ses stocks.

De manière générale, les grands bénéficiaires de la prime à la casse -qui avait stimulé la demande de petites voitures- sont ceux qui subissent aujourd'hui le plus fort contrecoup. Opel et Fiat traversent aussi une mauvaise passe, avec des baisses de ventes de respectivement 45% et 33%.
Google Translate gives us:
In January, French manufacturers were particularly hard hit. Sales of PSA Peugeot Citroen fell 27.4%, those of Renault fell 32.7%. Worrying, given that the Hexagon, the first market of the two groups is key for them in terms of both volumes and profitability. Evidence that he expects demand will remain weak, PSA will put more than 20,000 employees in four plants to short for a week in February or March to reduce inventory.

In general, the major beneficiaries of the cash for clunkers, which had boosted demand for small cars today are those who suffer the greatest backlash. Opel and Fiat also pass through a bad patch, with declines in sales of 45% and 33%.
Car sales plunge 27% to 45% year over year in France, and we've already seen the same patterns in the other countries in  Europe. They collapsed in three euro zone nations that have received international bailouts: 35.7 per cent in Greece, 40.5 per cent in Portugal and 51.8 per cent in Ireland (source).

But hey, we're not in a recession, right? And we won't be in one neither, as the Central Banks and Politicians will "save" us — if only by faking the numbers. 

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