The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the US motor vehicle and parts sector lost 27,000 jobs in April as automakers have cut production and laid off workers due to chip shortages.
Carmakers across the world have had to curb output, hampering their attempts to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, due to a shortage of vital chips used in everything from computer management of engines to driver assistance systems.
US auto demand, however, has risen since then, as consumers focus on personal safety and opt for private vehicles during the COVID-19 pandemic. Low interest rates and stimulus checks are also aiding the rebound.
The company, whose brands include Kelly and Dunlop, said tire volumes rose 12% to 35 million units in the quarter, while replacement tire volumes jumped 14%.
In a Jan. 19 letter to Deese first reported by Reuters, the United Auto Workers union and auto trade groups asked the Biden administration to consider "urging major silicon wafer foundries to ramp up production of automotive grade wafers."