BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
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NATIONAL RECOVERY ADMINISTRATION
— APti 8 1936
RESEARCH AND PLANNING DIVISION
NO. I *
THE AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY
FRANK EVANS, Jr.
(NOT FOR RELEASE: FOR USE IN DIVISION ONLY)
TIIE EVKET^ICE SrODY 37RISS
The SVIDESCE STUDIES vrere originally Tilanned as a r.eans of gathering
evidence hearing- upon various legal issues which arose ijii'ier the Kationa.l
Industrial Recovery Act.
These studies have value quite aside from the use for which they were
originally intnnded. Accordingly, they are now made available for confidential
use within the Division of Revie-,?, and for inclusion in Code Histories,
The full list of the Evidence Studies is as follows".
1. Autonohile Manuf act^iring Ind.
2. Boot and Shoe Mfg. Ind.
3. Bottled Soft Drink Ind.
4. B-ailders' Supplies Ind,
5. Chemical Mfg. Ind.
6. Cigar Mfg. Industry
7. Construction Industry
8. Cotton G-arnent Industry
9. Dress Mfg. Ind.
10. Electrical Contracting Ind.
11. Electrical Mfg. Ind.
12. Fah, Metal Prod. Mfg, , etc.
13. Fishery Industry
14. Furniture Mfg. Ind.
15. C-eneraj. Contra^ctors Ind.
16. Graphic Arts Ind.
17. Gray Iron Foimdry Ind,
18. Hosiery Ind.
19. Infant's & Children is Wear Ind.
20. Iron and Steel Ind.
22. torn be r & Timher Prod. Ind.
Mason Contractors Industry
Men's Clothing Industry
Motion picture Industry
Motor Bus Mfg. Industry (Dropped)
ITeedlework Ind. of Puerto Rico
Painting « ?a~pe rhanging & Decorating
photo Engraving Industry
plumbing Contracting Industry
Retail Food (See No. 42)
Retail Ltunher Industry
Retail Solid Fuel (Dropped)
Retail Trade Industry
Ruhher Mfg. Ind.
Rubber Tire Mfg. Ind.
Silk Textile Ind.
Structural Clay Products Ind,
TZaste Materials Ind.
Wiiolesale & Retail Food Ind, (See No.
Wide sale Fresh Fruit & Veg. 31)
In addition to the studies brought to completion, certain ma,terials have
been assembled for other industries. These ijiATSRIALS are included in the series
and are also made available for confidential use within the Division of Reviev/
and for inclusion in Code Histories, as foxlows;
44. Wool Textile Industry
45. Automotive Parts & Equip. Ind.
4£. Baking Industry
47. Canning Industry
4B. Coat and Suit Ind.
Household C-oods & Storage, etc, (Drop-
Motor Vehicle Retailing Tra.de Ind, ped)
Retail Tire & Battery Trade Ind.
Ship & Boat Bldg. & Repairing Ind,
Wholesaling or Distributing Trad^
L. C. Marshall
Director, Division of Reviev?
* c^^^\.\ ^^^
Chapter I THE NATURE OE THE Ii€)U3TEY 2
Definitions of the Industry 2
Origin and G-rov;th of the Industry 3
Number of Comapnies 4
Famter of Plants, "by States 5
Capital Invested 6
Numlier of Failures 6
Value of Products 7
Volume of Production 7
Chapter II LABOH STATISTICS
Numher of Sraployees 10
Seasonality of Employment. 10
Employees in Related Industries 10
Total Annual Wages 12
Per cent Lahor is of Value of Products 12
Hourl.3'' Wage Rate. , 13
Hours Worked Per Week 13
Weekly Earnings 13
Employees Under 16 Years of Age 13
Employment and Wages in
Principal States 15
Chapter III MATERIALS: RAW AND SEMI-PROCESSED
Cost of liaterials 16
Source of Raw Materials 18
Amounts Spent for Machinery,
Principal Materials and Fuel 18
Chapter IV PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION
Value and Volume of Production
In Principal States 19
Shipments across State Lines 19
Value and Volume of Products
Adverti sing 21
Trade Marks 22
Mode of Shipment 22
Distrihution of Products 22
Volume of Business, "by States 23
Chapter V GEl^IERAL IIvFORi.iii.TION
Trade Association 27
Labor Organizations 27
Table I Production, Miolesale V.-^-lue,
and .Registration of All Cars
and Trucks, for Specified Years 3
Table II NumlDer of Companies, 1934 4-5
Table III Faraber of Plants in
Principal States 5
Table IV Estimates of Capital Invested
in the Automobile llar/of acturing
Industry, 1919-1933 , 6
Table V Number of Conipanies Entering,
Leaving, and Remaining in the
Passenger Automobile Industry,
Table VI New Passenger Car Registrations
for Specified Members of the
Table VII New Truck Registrations for
Specified Members of the Indus-
try, 1933 and 1934 8-9
Table VIII Employment and Payrolls
In The Industr;'- As Defined
By Tne Co de ■'—
Table IX Emplo^rjnent In The Aiitomotive
And Related Industries, By
Kind of Employee s, 1933 12
Table X Average Hourly And Weekly
Earnings And Honors Worked
Per Week B^^ Uonths,
September 1333 - April 1935 14
Table XI Wage Earners JLnd Wages In The
"Motor Vehicle ■•?" Industry, By
Principal States, 1929, 1931, 1933 15
Chapter III i
Table XII llaterials Used In The
*i.uto mobile Manufacture
iVnd Repair , 1933 , 17
TalDle XIII Value of Products By
1929, 1931, and 193S 19
Tatle XIV Ner; Chevrolet Registrations,
In States Having Sfo
Chevrolet Factories Or
Assembly Plants, 1954 20
Table XV Value And Volume Of
Motor Vehicles Exported,
1929-1933 '. .,. 20-21
Table XVI Expenditm-es For national
Radio And l.Iaga,zine
Advertising By The
Automotive Industries 21
Table XVII Shipments Of Assembled
Passenger Cars And
Motor Trucks, By
Mode of Transit 22
Table XVIII l^lumber of Hetail And
^olesale Outlets, by
Table XIX Registrations of New
By States , 1933 25
Table XX Registration Of Wev;
By States, 1933 26
AUTOMOBILE KAHUFACTURIWG INDUSTRY
The data appearing in this report come, in the main, from
the folloTring sources: the National Automobile Chamher of Com-
merce; the Code Authoritv (Automohile Manufacturers' Association);
the Sureau of the Census; the trade journals. Automotive Industries
and Autonohile Topics ; The Automohile Industry , "by Hal-oh C. Epstein;
and the Research and planning Division, KRA. The National Auto-
mohile Chamber of Comi.ierce is a trade association which publishes
statistics in an annual booklet, Automobile Facts and Figures .
The National Automobile Cham.ber of Commerce changed its name in
1935 to the Automobile lianuf acturers Association, and this asso-
ciation constituted the Code Authority for the Industr""".
No information has been assembled for the section on Trade
Practices which forms Part V in the "Outline for Collection of
Evidence." Fragmentary material which falls under Part VI of
the Outline is therefore presented as Chapter V in this report.
The differences between the Code and Census definitions
of this Industry are exolained in Chapter I.
THE NATUEE OP TFIE IKDUSTEY
Definitions of the Industry
The Code defines the Automotile Industry as follows:
"The term 'Industry' as used herein includes the manufactur-
ing and assemhling within the United States of motor vehicles and
hodies therefor, and component and repair parts and accessories
hy manufacturers or assemhlers of motor vehicles.
"The term 'motor vehicles' as used herein means automohiles,
including passenger cars, trucks, truck tractors, "busses, taxi-
cahs, hearses, amhtilances, and other commercial vehicles for use
on the highway, excluding motorcycles, fire apparatus, and tractors
other than truck tractors."
The Census of Manufactures for 1931 gives the following definition for
the "Motor Vehicle" Industry:
"The classification 'Motor Vehicles' applies to all manufac-
tTjring estahlishments whose principal products are 4-wheeled or
6>^wheeled motor-propelled (internal-comhustion or electric) steer-
a"ble vehicles, except industrial trucks. Estahlishments engaged
primarily in the manufacture of motor-propelled fire apparatus,
street sweepers, road oilers, etc., are also classified in this
industry," (Manufacturers of motorcycles are classified in the
Motorcycles, Bicycles and Parts Industi^r, )
In addition, the Census of Manufactures has a separate industry''
classification "Mo tor- Vehicle Bodies and Motor-Vehicle Parts," which includes
estahlishments engaged in the manufacture of todies and parts either for sale
as such or for transfer to motor- vehicle manufacturing establishments. Thus,
if an automohile-manufacturing company manufactured its parts and "bodies in
one plant and assembled these hodies and parts into automohiles in another
plant, the Census would include the first plant and its employees, payrolls,
etc., in the Motor-Vehicle Bod.ies and Parts Industry, and the second plant
in the Motor Vehicle Industry,
It can thus "be seen that the Census classification "Motor Vehicles" and
the Code classification are not coextensive. The Census data on "Motor
Vehicles" do not include separate plants engaged in the manufacture of
todies and parts even though they are owned and operated "by automohile manu-
facturers. Consequently, Census figures on number of plants, wage earners,
and wages understate the size of the Automohile Manufacturing Industry as
defined hy the Code. On the other hand, the Census material includes in-
formation on fire apparatus, street sweepers, road oilers, etc., hut the
total volune of production in these categories is incidental. Except for the
inclusion of these comparatively minor groups, however, Census data on value
and volume of production can prohahly he considered as applicahle to the
Industry as defined hy the Code, since the value of all "bodies and parts
wo-uld "be included in the value of the finished motor vehicles, regardless of
whether they were produced "by plants classified in the "Motor Vehicle" or
"Motor-Vehicle Bodies and Motor-Vehicle Parts" Industries.
Origin and Growth of the Industry
The period from 1890 may Tse said to have witnessed the origin of the in-
dustry in a commercial sense. From an ezainina,tion of Census figures made hy
the Automohile Manufacturers Association, it is stated that there were hut
four automohiles manufactured in the United States in 1895. The subsequent
expansion of the industry is indicated in Tahle I.
Production, Wholesale Value, and Registration of
All Cars and Trucks, for Specified Years
Wliolesale Value a/
(No. of Units)
national Autoraohile Chamber of Commerce, Automobile Facts and Figures .
These figures are lovrer than those shown in the discussion of "Value
of Products" and in Tahle XIII "below. The difference is in part, at
least, due to the inclusion in the Census figures in the latter tahle
of the value of goods made as secondary products of the Motor Vehicle
Industry and also to the inclusion of the value of fire apparatus, etc
For the year 1934, the Automohile Manufacturers Association estimated
that factory sales of cars and trucks totaled 2,753,831 units, having a whole-
sale value of $1,470,431,634.
The important position which the Industry has come to occupy in the
national economy may he judged from data contained in the United States
Summary of the Retail Census, which indicated that sales of the motor vehicle
retailing trade which were $6,407,512,000 in 1929 and $2,127,720,000 in 1933
accounted for 13.0 per cent and 8,5 per cent of total retail sales of the
nation in the respective years.
During its period of growth and in its majority the Industry has dis-
played characteristics which are now inevitably associated v;ith it. Of these,
the most striking is the small number of separate onter^irises comprising it.
This featiore is a natural result of the very large investment required for
mass production of completed units whose cost runs into hundreds of dollars.
A consequence of this concentration of production into the hands of a few,
whose individual products are ?/ell-recognized, has "been the development of
a specialized nechanism of distritution, the dealer system, which has served
as a model in the formation of similar methods adopted "by many other in-
dustries. Under this system ea.ch manufacturer ha-s a group of representatives
in every state, usually handling his own product exclusively. The welfare of
the group is so hound up with that of the manufacturers that a frequently-
used gauge of the prospects of aiv manufacturer is the increase or decrease in
the numher cf dealers handling his make of car.
Uumher of Companies
The total numher of companies which reported to the Automohile Manufac-
turers Association under the Code for the Automohile Hanufacturiig Industry
is shown "by states in Tahle II.
Numher of Companies, 1934
U. S. Total
Source: Code Authority (Automobile Manufacturers Association).
a/ The number of manufacturers included in the Census classification
"Motor Vehicles" in 1933 was 90 (covmting the General Motors
Organization as 6). It is believed that the difference between the
Census and Code Authority figures is in part accounted for by the
inclusion of companies manufacturing fire apparatus, etc. in the
former. Also the number of comoanies may have decreased between
1933 and 1934.
t/ International Harvester headqioarters are in Chicago, Taut since its
iDiggest plant is in Springfield, Ohio, it is coiinted in Ohio.
c/ Mack Trucks headquarters are in xJew York "but since its largest plant
is in Allentown, Pennsylvania, it is counted in Pennsylvania. It
also has two plants in New Jersey hut these were not counted.
Humher of Plants, "by States.
Table III gives the total number of plants in principal producing states.
In the Code Authority tabulation, when a company has more than one mamofac-
turing unit in the same city, the group of units is shown in Tahle III as
The differences "between the figures from the Census and Code Authority
are "believed ascri"ba"ble to differences in the classifications of plants as
pointed out in the Foreword and in the footnotes of Ta'ble III.
Number of Plants in Principal States
Number of Plants, as Re-ported by
Census of Manufactures
1929 1931 1933
"U. S. Total
Source: Data for 1929, 1931 and 1933 from Census of Manufactures . "Motor
"Vehicles;" for September 1933 and 1934 from Code Authority (Automo-
bile Manufacttirers Association).
a/ Ntunber of plants refers to those owned by companies reporting to the
Code Authority, (See Table II ).
b/ The apparent discrepancy between the two 1933 figures is probably due
to the fact that the Census classification does not include separate
plants engaged l^holly in the manufacture of bodies or parts even
though owned and" operated by automobile manufacturers. On the other
hand, it includes raanufactxirers of fire apparatus, etc., who were
not covered by this Code.
c/ Not shown serparately; inclixded in "Other States."
Capital invested in the Industry serves as a fiirther gauge of its size
and growth. Estimates relative thereto are presented in Tatle IV.
Estimates of Capital Invested in the
Automobile Manufacturing Industry?-, 1919 - 1933 aj
Chamber of Commerce,
Automohile Facts and Eig-
ures, (1934 Edition)
a/ These figures represent net tangible assets of United States motor
vehicle manufacturers, and do not include parts, accessory, "body
and tire manufacturers. Net tangible assets are determined "by de-
ducting good will and current liabilities from total assets,
number of Eailures
It is to be expected that an industry showing such large increases in
volume of sales would attract many new firms; likewise it may be expected
that severe competition would result in many failures. A record of conrpanies
entering and leaving the Industry for the period from 1902 to 1926 is given
in Table V. It should be noted that this tabulation covers only the
Kumter of Companies Entering, Leaving,
and Remaining in the Passenger Automobile Industry,
1902 - 1926.
f The Automobile
Of particular significance is the decline from 1921 to 1926 in the num-
ber of concerns remaining in the industry. Fully developed data of identical
character for the years 1927 to 1934 are not available; it may be noted, how-
ever, that it was during this period that makes previously enjoying consider-
able public favor disappeared from the market.
According to Dun and Bradstreet there were 8 failures in the Automobile
Majiufactxiring Industry in 1934, No failures were recorded for the first
three months of 1935,
Value of Products
Reports of the Census of Manufactures show that the value of products
of the Motor Vehicle Industry declined from $3,722,800,000 in 1929 to
$1,568,000,000 in 1931 and still further to $1,097,000,000 in 1933. As pre-
viously stated, it is believed that the Census figures on value nay be con-
sidered as approximately applicable to the Industry as defined by the Code,
Volume of Production
The volume of production of passenger cars and motor trucks, as measured
by new car registrations, is shown for leading members of the Industry in
Tables VI and VII. New car registration in 1934 showed a substantial in-
crease over 1933, The information on pasr.enger cars indicates, however, that
despite this improvement, the number of registrations in 1934 was less than
half the 1929 registrations. The improvement has been very irneven among
different members of the Industry; a num'ber of the smaller producers ~ for
examijle, Willys Overland showed in 1934 on].y a small fraction of their 1929
"Eevi Passenger Car Registrations for
Sipecified Members of the Industry
Member of Industry
Pord Motor Co.
Studebaker Motors a/
Hudson Motor Co,
Hupmobile Motor Co.
Packard Motor Co.
Auburn Motor Corp,
Reo Motor Co,
Continental Motor Co,
Pranldin Motor Co.
Source: Chilton Company, Inc., Automotive Industries . February 27, 1932,page
175, and February 9, 1935, page 176.
a/ Pierce Arrow is member of Studebaker Corp,
b/ LaPayette is not included for 1933,
Hew Truck Registrations for
Specified Members of the Industry, 1933 and 1934.
Member of Industry
(Continued on following page)
TABLE VII (Cont'd)
MemTjer of Indus try 1955 1954
Reo Motor Co, 5,042 5,055
White Truck Co. 1,584 5,965
Federal Truck Co, 1,560 1,962
Mack Truck Co. 1,652 1,830
StudelDalcer Truck Co. 1,872 1,697
BroclCTfay , 075 1,213
Auto-Car Co. 1,127 1,159
Stewart - 684 756
Indicna 1,252 729
American Austin 1,055 494
All Others 5,858 5,655
Source: Chilton Com-Dany, Inc., A utomotive Industries . Fehruary, 1955, page
The nature of the competition affecting the Industry is in some respects
highly individual. In the first place, competition is entirely within the
Industry - the automohile has no real competitor as a means of personal,
quick, and evex--ready transportation; and it is douhtful that, as instruments
of pleasure, the rivalry offered hy water craft, airplanes, musical instru-
ments, etc, has any si<snificant effect on sales volumes. As a means of
freight transportation, the importance of the automohile is hot fully devel-
oped; certainly, at present, the incursion into that field is "being made "by-
it rather than against it.
Competition within the Industry is, again, almost entirely among domes-
tic manufacturers. There are, to "be sure, efforts "by foreign makers — ■nota'bly
in the expensive passenger car field — to sell in the United States, The vol-
ume of their sales is so small as to "be immaterial; according to Automo"bile
Facts and Figures , 1/ the numher of motor vehicles imported into the United
States in 1929 was 750 and in 1955, 554.
Competition within the Industry is extremely keen, and since the product
of each mainufacturer is readily identifiahle, methods of competition involve
means of direct and swift appeal to the constimer. Thus, a price change on
the part of one producer is likely to lead to other revisions, not only for
cars in the same price class "but also in immediately higher or lower price
"brackets. It is to "be noted in this connection that the Industry does not
esta"blish varying prices for different geographical areas within the couatryj
the only varia"ble element in the cost to the purchaser is the cost of trans-
portation from point of shipment to point of delivery.
1/ Editions of 1929 and 1934,
E'om'ber of Eraployees
Factory ein-'olo:;ment in tlie A-utomo''Dile Industry declined from an average
of more than 425,000 workers in 1929 to less than 200,000 in 1933. Three
employment series are presented in Tatle VIII. The series in the second
column has "been obtained from reports from practically 100 per cent of the
manufacturers operating under the Code for the Automobile Manufacturing In-
dustry. Since this series is not availa^ole prior to September 1933, a
series hased on thirteen of the cu.rrently reporting companies ^-'ho could
furnish pre-Code data are presented in the first column. The figures in
the third colimn have "been compiled "by the National Autorao"bile Cham'ber of
Commerce. Although the April 1934 figure of the Cha[n"ber is about 40,000
less than the A;oril figoire in the second column, it is believed that in a
general vaj the Chamber figures may be considered reliable indicators of
employment prior to 1953.
Seasonality of EraDloynent
The irregularity of employment in the Automobile Industry which re-
sults in part from the introduction of now models in the early spring month?
is one of the chief problems of the industry.
As shoT7n in Table VIII above, during the year 1934, the number of fac-
tory employees fluctuated bet-reen 208,188 in October to 368,565 in April.
The suggestion has been made that "regularization can be substantially
achieved by fcill announcement of new models and a foil date for the Auto-
Do'oile show." 1/
Employees in Belated Industries
Table IX is presented to indicate in a broader way the importance of
the Automobile Industry as a factor in national employment. A significant
fact brought out by this table is that the 190,027 workers directly em-
ployed in 1933 by the Automobile Hanuf acturing Indiistry formed only a
small fraction of the total workers associated with the automobile and re-
1/ Research and Planning Division, IIRA, "Preliminary Report on Study of
Regulari nation of Employment and Improvement of Labor Conditions in the
(January 23, 1935), Page 10 of Summary.
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EliPLOYIiENT III THE ,'.UTO:..OTIV.i AID RELATED INDUSTRIES,
3Y KIIE) OE EilPLOl'EES, 1933
Kind of EmploA'"ees
llirmber of Workers
Motor Vehiclfj Eactory T/orkers
Tire, parts and accessory factory v/orkers
Dealers axid sales'-nen, r.otor vehicles, parts,
R-arage and repair shop enployees
Bus, Tnj:i and priv'rte chauffeurs
Autorioliile financing:, insurance, advertisin,".,
Total eriplced directly
G-asoline refining and retailing
Iron and steel 'vorkers
Eon-ferrous netal \'orkers
Railroad and stecmship workers
Lumber and woodworkers
Electric poorer and fuel "orlrers
hiscellaneour; other raw na.terial supplies
Total eiToloyed indirectly
Source: national Automobile Chamber of Comnerce, Automobile Eacts and
Eigures_, (1934 Edition),
Total iuinual VJa-c^es
The only fi.'^^res a,vailable on total annual wages for the Industry as de-
fined by the Code are those from, the National Automobile Chamber of Con-
merce shovm in Table VIII. These figures indicate that total Y'ages have
declined from $775,479,000 in 1929 to $233,508,000 in 1933. As has been
pointed out in the discussion of employment, it is believed that the Chanbe
figixres give, in general, an accurate picture of conditions.
Totol weekly payrolls for the entire Industry are shown in Tpble VIII,
Since September 1933 the Industry's total weekly payroll has ranged betv/eer
$3,269,000 in November 1933 end. $11,302,000 in April 1935.
Per Cent L abor is of Value of Proaucts
In 1929 the wage bill of $775,479,000 formed approximately 22 per cent
of the estimated wholesale value of product of $3,576,500,000. In 1933
wages formed slightly less than 24 per cent of the total value ($233,508,00i
out of $987,400,000). Some caution should be exercised in the use of these
figares since it is not possible to determine precisely the comparaliility of
the 1.7 age ojid value data, l/
Hourly Wage Rate
Jroci January 1934, average hourly earnings rose from S3. 3 cents to 74,4
cents in October, 1934. liiiring the first four months of 1935 hourly earnings
ra:^_ged het^-een 71, 5. and 72,8 conts. These data, vfhicK are sho'Tn in TaTsle X,
are not availahle.. prior to Scjptenhcr 1933 nor are they availatile for nales kr
Hours T ' Jor]:ed Per ¥eek
As shown in Tahle X, the v^orking i-eek has ranged between 26.7 hours in
November 1933 and 40.9 in April 1935. Comparable data for males and females
separately are not available.
Weekly earnings are closely associated with the length of the working
■week and tend to rise a,s it lengthens. In the Automobile Industry weekly eai
ings have ranged from $17.57 in November 193S to $29.76 in April 1935. (See
Table X) . The Automobile Industry in April 1935 paid higher average weekly
earnings than any other Industry shown in the Bureau of Labor Statistics in-
dustry classification which appears in the Trend of Emplo^nnent .
Emnloyees Under 16 Years of Age
Children have not been emr)loyed in the Automobile Industry in significai
numbers. The Census of Occupations showed only 112 children 10 to 15 years
old employed in automobile factories in 1930. 2j More recent information is
1/ The National Aut om obile Chamber of Commerce figures on wholesale value
were used rather than the Census value of products as it was thought thes
figures \7ould compare more closely with the wage data which were also es-
timated by the Chamber .
2/ Fifteenth Census of the United States: 1930, Occupation Statistics ,
"United States Summary," p. 88.
AVEEAGS HOURLY ASD >7ESKLY EARKIHGS AHD HOURS WOKKED PER
WEEK BY MONTHS, SEPTEMBER 1933 - APRIL 1935
- - - - '
Average -oar Eraioloyee
Source: Computed ■b3'- the Division of Research and Planning,
ICIA, from monthly reports suhniitted by individual
automobile man^afacturers through the Automobile
Manufacturers Association. For all practical pur-
poses 100 per cent of the automobile manufactijring
concerns submitted reports each month.
a/ Covers production employees and auxiliary (maintenance
and service) employees.
BriTployment and Wapes in Principal States
Incomplete information on tlie niira'ber of employees in leading states
and their total wages has been assembled in Table XI. This table is based
on Census data for the classification "Motor Vehicles" which are believed
to cover only about half the employees shovm in Table VIII. l/ It is
presented merely to indicate the concentration of the Industry in Hichigan,
Ohio, Indiana, and a fev: other states.
WAGE EARMERS MH) WAGES IK THE "MOTOR VEHICLES" IKDUSTRY,
BY PRINCIPAL STATES, 1929, 1931, 1933
f Wa^-e Earners
Total Annual Wa
U. S. Total
10 , 603
All Other States
Source: Census of
a/ Data not available.
1/ For discussion of this difference, see Chapter I, section on
"Definitions of tlie Industr'^. "
MTERIILS: HAW Al'ID S3i,II -PROCESSED
Cost of Materials
The amounts spent liy tlie, AiitonolDile Industry for materials, fuel, --
and purchased electric energy may oe plaxed at approximately $2,^1-01,000,000
in 1329, $1,0UU,000,000 in i331, and $757,000,000 in I933, according to the Cem
Censu.s of Manufactures reports on the "Motor Yehicles" Industry.
Although the Code includes the nplcing of hodies and parts not reported
under this latter classification, hut rs,ther u.nder "Motor Vehicle Bodies
and Motor Vehicle Parts," the fact that the cost of materials going into
those hodies and parts uhich emerge finally as vehicles uould he included
in the total cost of materials reported oy the vehicle manufacturers mesjis
that the data reported hy them can he considered rougiily applicahle to the
Industry' as defined hy the Code. The aualification alrea6-y noted in the
use of Census data hecause of their incliision of fire a,pparatus, etc., ap"
plies to the cost of materials.
Tlie importpjice of the Industry as r. fr.ctor in the consunption of ra'vr,
se:-..i--processed and f-ally-processed nr.terialc ua:/ "be judged fron Table XII.
I.L4.TEaiAlS USED III TIE AUTOMOBILE
lviAI.JUFACTU1ffi Ai3 EEPAIR, 1S33
Per Cent of
tion Used by
A^i.tonobile Chamber of Com-merce, Aut
omobile Pacts oiid
Pigures, (1S3'-!- Edition) e::cept -fxiere othenrise indicated.
a/ Pigures from Iron Age . Do not include tonnage sold by steel
Jobbers to repair shops or steel sold to automobile manufactuirers
in the form of bolts, nuts, aiid rivets.
b/ Por use in nanu.facturing motor vehicles in the United States only.
The usefulness of the fig-ares presented in TsJble XI is some'jhat
lessened by the fact that they include materials used in repair uorh.
e::act proportion of these naterials t'oin^ into tlie manufacture of nerr
ca.rs is indeterminalDle.
Source of Haw Materials .
The domestic sotirces of tbx! i.iaterials iised in the Industry are in-
dicated by the acconpanyinf; nap of the United States \7hich shons the rcxr
ma^terial contributed by ea^ch atate. liap I, in conjunction with Tp.bles
III a.bove and XVIII below, gives strilrin^ evidence of the nanner in which
the Industry draws its naterials fron every corner of the country, ca/rries
on its manufacturing processes in co-;paratively few sta,tes, and distributes
its finished product throughout the United St?.tes.
Amotmts Spent for liachinery, Frinci'.^rl H ate ria ls,
Data are not available on the pj-^.our-ts spent by the Autonobile Indus-
try for various ra,v7 materials nor for ecuiprient. The Census of Ilanufac-
tures report on "liotor Vehicles" for 132S Suudivides _the total of i52,U01,-
511,763 for materials, fuel and purchased energy into $2,379j^9S,0S9 ?or
rnaterie.ls a.nd $22,013,67^ for fuel and purchased energ;', A simila^r
allocation of costs is not given for 1931 ^^^- 1933«
fill II III
PHODUCTIOW AlvnD DISTRIBUTION
Value and Volume of Production in Principal Sta.tes
Betrreen 1939 and 1933 the relative importance of Michigan in the Automo-
bile Industry, as nie;:\sured hy value of products, has increased. Computations
made from the figures in Table SII show that in 1939 and 1931, Michigan pro-
duced hetrfeen 40 and 42 per cent of the total value of products in this In-
dustry and that in 19S3 the proportion has risen to almost 54 per cent. It
should "be emphasized that this increase is merely relative. Every state
listed in Tahle XIII, including Michigan, has experienced severe declines in
value of goods produced.
A corresponding distribution of the numher of vehicles produced in these
states is not available.
Shipments Across State Lines
Complete information on interstate shipnents of automobiles cannot be
shovEi, but the figures assembled in Table XIV are indicative of the interstate
movement of the products of the Industry. This table deals only with
Chevrolets, but it s]ioi'g that in 1934 more than 550,000 new Chevrolets were
registered in states v;hich had neither Chevrolet factories nor assembly plants
Simila,r tables on other leading makes would imquestionably present the same
VALUE OP PRODUCTS BY PRIatCIPAL STATES
1939, 1931, Al'JD 1933
Value of Products (in Millions'
State 1929 1931 1933
U. S. Total $3,722.8 $1,568.0 $1,097.0
California 138.3 67.7 46.1
Illinois 62.4 25.3 a/
Indiana 208.2 114.5 45.9
Michigan 1,549.7 635.9 588.3
Hew York 232.3 153.4 a/
Ohio 387.4 136.6 49,7
Peniisylvania 100.5 41.1 36,2
Wisconsin 219.2 97.2 a/
All Others 824.8 295.9 330.8
Source; Census of I.Ian ui'actur es, "Motor Vehicles."
a/ Data not available, iiicluded in "All Others."
HEW CHEVROLET REGISTRATIONS, IN STATES HAVING NO
CHEVROLET FACTORIES OR ASSEHBLY PLANTS, 1934
District of Columbia
35 , 934
10 , 408
Source: Automohile Toioics , February 16, 1935, pp. 106-107.
Value s.nd Volurae of Products Exported
The decline '-'hich began in 1930 in both the number and value of motor
vehicles exported from the United States was checked in 1933. As can be seen
from Table XV, 1933 showed noticeable improvement over 1932, but was neverthe
less much below the levels of 1931 and the two preceding years.
VALUE AMD VOLUl'.IE OF MOTOR VEHICLES EXPORTED,
1929 - 1933
( Thousands )
53 , 048
(Continued on next page)
TABLE 2V (Continued)
Soixrce: National Aiitoino'bile CharalDer of Commerce
Automobile Facts and Figiir es (1934 Edition)
a/ U. S. e>nDorts including foreign assenMies.
Partial exiDenditures for national radio feind magazine advertising "by the
Automotive Industries 1/ are shown in Tahle XVI. It i?ill he noted that the
amounts siDent for radio hroadcasting were higher in 1933 and 1934 thaxi in
1929. Expenditures for national magazine advertising in 1934 were only ahout
half as high as in 1929. The data on radio advertising are for the National
Broadcasting Corapan:/ and the Col-umhia Broadcasting System and include only
national advertising, embracing the various networks or combinations thereof.
Also, the figures include only the cost of the facilities and not that of
In addition to the radio and magazine advertising the Automobile In-
dustry'- uses a large amount of space in local newspapers, but the volume and
cost of this is not kno^-m.
EXPEND! TITiIES EOR NATIONAL RAllIO AITO lIAGAZIIniE ADVERTISING
BY THE AUTOMOTI\^ INDUSTRIES a/
Amount Spent On
( Thousands )
Source; Dennej' Publishing Company, Inc., New York, as reproduced in the
Survey of Current Business published by the Department of Commerce.
a/ It is not known how closely the groups represented by these figures com-
pare with the groups included under the Code.
b/ The data are for the National Broadcasting Co., (inc.) and the Columbia
Broadcasting System (inc.), and include only national advertising, em-
bracing the various net'-orks, or combinations thereof. They do not in-
clude the records of local broadcasting nor the cost of program talent.
c/ Data represent the grand total cost of all advertising for all classes of
national magazines. All space costs are based on advertisers' one time,
or single, insertion rate as quoted in "Standard Rate and Data Service,"
a.nd do not make allovjance for longer contract rates.
1/ It is not knoxTO how closely the groups re-oresented by these figures com-
pare "'ith the grouns included under the Code.
The entire -Droduction of the Autonohile Industry is advertised and sold
on a national acale under well estahlished names or "makes."
Mode of Shipment
Modes of shipping assembled passenger cars and motor trucks from factor-
ies and assemhling plants in the United States, inc].uding exports, are shown
in Tahle XVII.
SHIHENTS a/ OF ASSEliBLED PASSENGER CARS Am MOTOR TRUCKS,
BY MODS OF TRANSIT
By Railroad Machines Machines
(Carloads Delivered Shipped
Year of Machines) Overland "by Boat
1929 723,631 1,958,738 199,576
1931 283,858 1,050,545 85,609
1932 130,820 706,977 51,103
1933 198,287 930,303 126,258
Source: National Automohile Chamber of Commerce, Autonohile Facts and Figures
a/ From factories and assembling plants in United States, including
The importance of railroad transportation may he underestimated at first
glance since the figures are in terms of carloads rather than number of
machines. It is true however, that the relative importance of railroad
transportation of cars and trucks has dimished since 1929. In 1933 only 27
per cent as many carloads of cars were shipped by rail as in 1929, v^hile com-
parable figures for overland and boat delivery were 47.5 per cent and 63 per
Distribution of Products
The most striking characteristic of the system by which automobiles pass
from manufacturer to consumer is its control by the manufacturer. The steps
in the distribution mechanism are, in essence, from manufacturer to dealer,
and from dealer to consumer, although actually most of the cars pass through
a factory branch, or a "distributor," or both, between the manufacturer and
the dea,ler. Many variations appear in this organization, but the units com-
prising it are the same: man-ufacturer , factory branch, distributor, dealer,
conswiier. Whatever variation occurs, effective control remains in the hands
of the manufacturer. Consequently, dealers all over the nation watch eagerly
for sales reports, production reports, and earning statements of manufacturers,
for upon the manufacturer's welfare and performance, depends the extension of
their dealer franchises.
Vol"uiae of Business, by States
The num'ber of retail and wholesale automobile dealers in each state is
shown in Table XVIII. At the end of 1933 there was a total of over 102,000
retail outlets and 5,430 wholesale establishments which isere scattered over
every state in the Union. Preliminary figures for 1934 released by the Auto-
mobile Manufacturers Association indicate that the number of retail outlets
had incres.sed to almost 106,000 and the number of wholesalers to 5,759, Of
the 106,000, 36,900 were classified as car and truck dealers as compared with
35,255 at the end of 1933.
The value of volume of products sold to dealers in each state are not
available. However, an indication of the amount of business done in each
state can be had from Tables XIX and XX which show respectively the number
of ne\7 passenger cars and trucks registered in each state in 1933. The
largest numbers of registrations of both passenger cars and trucks were in
New York, Pennsylvania was second in importance.
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EEGISTRATIONS OP NEW PASSENGER CAHS, BY STATES, I933
Hunter of Reg-
U. S. Total
District of Colunbir.
Source: Conpiled 07 R. L. Polk and Corapraiy, and ol)tained froEi the
Automotive Division of the Durea^i of Eoreign and Domestic
KEGISTRATIOa OF ICEW COM.iERCIAL CARS. BY STATES. 1933
U. S. Total
District of ColumTDia
Source: Compiled by R. L. Polk and Conpany, and obtained from the
Automotive Division of the 3ureau of Foreign and Domestic
The foregoing data express quantitatively- the mechanism of the
IncSxistry. It has teen shorm ho\7 the Inoxistr;'- gathers together sX central-
ized points rav.', semi-processed, and fully-processed materials; converts
then into completed units; and markets the finished product throughout the
nation and in foreign countries. It has also heen indicated hon grea.t is
the concentrated po\7er of a fevr management groups in the Industry.
Particular manifestations of this povrer are found in the attitude
of the manufacturer tonard the dealer, in vrhich there is to he found evi-
dence of considerahle nonchalance as to the l?,tter's welfare. Tliis po\;er
is also easily discerned in the relationship oet-jeen the manufacturer and
his suppliers, rhere it has resulted in competition of the most ruthless
sort sjnong such suppliers.
A peculiar feature of the Industr;' is the singularity of its "trade
association" activities. There is hut one association of importance in
the Industry'' — the Automohile Manufacturers Association — to which all im-
portant memhers of the Industry, \7ith the exception of the ?ord Ilotor
Company, "belong. It is an outgrowth of the Association of Licensed Auto-
mohile lianufacturers, formed in I903 to regulate the use of the Selden
patents. TThen ths^t Association's influence v/as lessened in I9II hy court
decision regarding the va.lidity of these patents, there developed from
its nemhership the Hational Automohile Chaifoer of Com.ierce. This name was
clianged early in 1935 to the Automohile Uanufa.cturers Association. It is
one of the strongest trade associations in the country and one with \7h0se
activities the puhlic is verj'' familiar through its sponsorship of natters
of direct puhlic interest.
The relationship hetween labor aaid management in the Industi^ ha,s
heen influenced hy the facts that until ybtj recent years there has heen
a constantly and rapidly increasing gain in the nuraher of workers required,
and that the wage scale of the Industr;.' has heen high. 5\irthemore, the
physical conditions of plants have heen such as to contribute to the con-
fort of workers to a greater degree tha.n those vrhich charsxterized many
other industries. As a result, lahor trouble in the Industry has been
rare until recent years, when terrific demands have been put upon the work-
er as a result of the keen competition between manufacturers. ITortified by
Section 7 (a) of the Hational Industrial Recovery Act, different labor unions
hs^ve, since its passage, been active in organization work. Their efforts
represent the only large scale agressive action along such lines since 1912,
the earlier action having been unsuccessful. At present the three la,hor
organizations of greatest influence in the Industry'' are: the American federa-
tion of Labor, the Associated Automobile 'Jorkers of America, and the Llechan-
ics' Educational Society of Ajnerica. Of these, the Aiierican Federation of
Labor claims to h,ave the greatest menbership in the Industry,