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Is Cash For Clunkers Out Of Money, Again?

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We've been watching as the amount of funds in the Cash For Clunkers kitty quickly dwindles, and now the National Automobile Dealers Association is asking for guidance because they believe there's no money left.


Given the current "burn rate" of dollars it's been estimated that there's less than 19 days left of the program. The latest figures from the Department of Transportation show 435,102 submitted with a dollar value of $1.814 billion used. This should, in theory, leave $1 billion left. But that it assumes there's real-time tracking of the submissions and, so far as we can tell, there isn't.

We've actually inquired to the NHTSA multiple times how, specifically, they were going to wind the program down. We've yet to get an answer but Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood said today they were going to explain what, specifically, is happening. Until then dealers are worried there transactions will be on the other side of the program and not be reimbursed.


In fact, the NADA says "In view of the foregoing, dealers who accept additional "clunker" deals face a growing risk that they may not be reimbursed."

Photo Credit: GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images