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Semiconductor Shortage Hammering Automakers, Costing Billions in Lost Production and Sales

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Semiconductor chips are printed onto silicon wafers and loaded into containers in the clean room of GlobalFoundries.

The global auto industry will produce nearly 4 million fewer vehicles than planned this year because of the shortages, losing about $110 billion in sales, according to consulting firm AlixPartners.

Credit: Cindy Schultz/The Washington Post

The global shortage of computer chips continues to hammer automakers, forcing factory shutdowns and sapping sales and profits, with mixed views on when relief might arrive.

Seventeen auto factories in North America and Europe have halted or reduced production in recent weeks over the scarcity of the tiny components, according to Seraph Consulting, which is advising automakers on the shortages. The shutdowns have affected plants in Michigan, Kentucky, Kansas, Mexico, Canada and Germany.

Ford, General Motors, Tesla, BMW and Daimler are among the companies that have reported continuing difficulties in recent days. On Wednesday, Ford CEO Jim Farley said that while the company is seeing some signs of improvement in chip supply, the situation "remains fluid," with continuing delays from a semiconductor factory in Japan that is recovering from a fire.

From The Washington Post
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