NEW YORK (Stockpickr) -- After a gut-wrenching industry downturn in 2009, the auto industry began to stage a remarkable recovery in 2010, and investors began to look further down the road to even more gains. Almost every company shed a huge amount of fixed costs and looked poised for record profits as industry sales volumes slowly rebounded.
Shares of Ford Motor (F), for example, quickly surged to nearly $20 by early 2011. And GM's (GM) late-2010 IPO saw such a hearty reception that investors scored a quick 20% gain in just a few months. Many auto parts suppliers also saw their shares rise up to fresh post-crisis highs.
And then, the bottom fell out -- again. Ford, GM and those suppliers have seen their stocks fall 30% or even 40% from those peaks over the last year as investors suddenly lost their enthusiasm for this resurgent sector.
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