Phil LeBeau is a CNBC auto and airline industry reporter based at the network's Chicago bureau. He is also editor of the Behind the Wheel section on CNBC.com.
LeBeau has reported one-hour documentaries for the network, including "Dreamliner: Inside the World's Most Anticipated Airplane," "Ford: Rebuilding an American Icon" and "Saving General Motors" and "Failure to Recall: Investigating GM."
Prior to joining CNBC, LeBeau served as a media relations specialist for Van Kampen Funds in Oak Brook Terrace, Ill., and was instrumental in implementing an initiative to communicate the company's mutual fund and investment practices to the public and the press. While at Van Kampen, LeBeau held a Series 6 license.
Previously, he held general assignment reporting positions at KCNC-TV, the CBS affiliate in Denver, and KAKE-TV, the ABC affiliate in Wichita, Kan. LeBeau began his career as a field producer at WCCO-TV in Minneapolis, where he wrote, produced and researched consumer stories. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism with a bachelor's degree in journalism and broadcasting.
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As I was watching the dismal auto sales numbers come in on Monday, I was waiting for somebody to drop me an e-mail and sarcastically remind me that it was just a few months ago when I said, "Things can't get much worse in the auto industry."
Happy New Year! Yes, I was bummed to see my Blackhawks get blown out by the Wings at Wrigley. But as I watched a hockey game played outside (very cool!), I read through your predictions for next year in the auto industry. Karnac has nothing on you guys.
Monday night, the Treasury Department agreed to lend GMAC $6 Billion out a new TARP fund set up to specifically help the struggling auto industry. This move, along with GMAC getting bank holding status last week are two huge steps in reviving a struggling auto industry. They may not be sexy moves, but they are critical moves.
With the auto companies on their holiday breaks, this is always a week when I think about the year ahead for the auto industry. In past years, some of the predictions I've made to myself have come true, while many more were so off the mark it was kind of funny. So: What will happen in '09?
Toyota says it is recalling 690,000 Tacoma pickup trucks because the rear leaf springs could break, puncture the gas tank and cause a fire.
The American automaker heads into the fourth quarter needing a shot in the arm from its bread-and-butter truck: the F-Series.
Wal-Mart says Tracy Morgan and other people in a vehicle struck from behind by a company truck on a New Jersey highway weren't wearing seatbelts.
Shares of Ford fell more than 7 percent Monday afternoon after headlines came out from its investor day.
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