There were three million unsold cars sitting in storage or salesrooms across the US last month. Even before the current crisis, car production has far superseded the level of sales needed to achieve the scale of profit the companies demand.
There was a massive expansion in investment in the 1990s as the car giants set up new plants across the world. Cheap credit encouraged them to believe sales would follow.
These companies plan their investments, but they do so separately and in competition with each other. When the production lines came on tap profits had already dried up.
The cost of all this will be paid by car workers joining unemployment lines worldwide, and the loss of productive capacity that could be switched to producing things to benefit us all.