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Weak Demand Helps Extend Shutdown at Honda

April 8, 2020
American Honda Motor Co. reportedly has idled about half of its U.S. workforce, complying with COVID-19 response initiatives and to a "continued steep decline in sales".

Honda Motor Co. is expanding the scope of its plant shutdowns in North America through May 1, affecting multiple automobile assembly and engine and transmission manufacturing plants, as well as powersports products like ATVs.

The closings involve about 10,000 workers, according to independent reporting.

Honda began idling automotive operations on March 23, as did numerous manufacturers responding to state and local initiatives encouraging individuals to isolate themselves at home to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Since then, the automaker has issued updates to its policy, and this week noted that the latest actions "are in response to the continued steep decline in sales across the automobile and powersports industries".

"In addition to the impact of COVID-19 on the marketplace, stay-at-home orders in many cities and states prevent consumers in a number of markets from purchasing new vehicles. As a result, Honda must continue to suspend production in order to align product supply with a lack of market demand," the automaker announced.

One outlier to Honda's production suspension is Honda Power Equipment Mfg. in North Carolina. The group's latest updates indicate it will not remain suspended through May 1, but was scheduled to resume production this week.

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