NTDA Survey Shows Tyre Retailer Confidence Down
The NTDA (National Tyre Distributors Association) has published the results of a members survey, which shows that UK tyre retailers are battening down the hatches to avoid the pain of the looming recession. “Even though it’s the early days of the recession, the answers to our survey indicate that tyre retailers are battening down the hatches and are expecting a tough time ahead,” association director, Richard Edy commented.
Two thirds (66%) of those questioned said that they have reduced their capital expenditure, while 62 per cent have postponed the purchase of equipment. When it comes to the workforce, just over half of the businesses (55 per cent) have reduced staffing levels and 50 per cent have awarded pay rises below the level of inflation. 45 per cent reported that they had reduced staff hours or cut overtime.
On the financial front, 21 per cent said that they had been refused a bank loan, while 40 per cent claimed to have suffered from increased bank or credit charges. Unsurprisingly in these difficult times, 72 per cent of the businesses have introduced tighter credit control conditions. 67 per cent reported a fall-off in levels of retail business and 64 per cent have responded to the downturn by reducing their stock levels.
Perhaps more worryingly, 64 per cent claimed to have noticed a deterioration in the condition of tyres removed, which bears out a recent survey by car insurance provider Swinton, in which 23 per cent of motorists admitted they would not be replacing tyres until they were very close to the legal minimum tread depth of 1.6 millimetres (despite parts of the tyre industry recommending 3 millimetres for safety reasons).