US auto sales grow but signs of slow­down

The Myanmar Times - - International Business -

AU­TOMAK­ERS strug­gled to main­tain US ve­hi­cle sales growth in July, with big­ger play­ers post­ing de­clines in a fresh sign that the in­dus­try’s six-year boom may be slow­ing.

While over­all sales in July inched up, Gen­eral Mo­tors’ sales de­clined 2 per­cent from a year ago and Toy­ota’s de­clined 1.4pc. Ford re­ported a 3pc decline.

Over­all about 1.52 mil­lion ve­hi­cles were sold last month, up 0.7pc from a year ago, ac­cord­ing to Au­to­data.

The sea­son­ally ad­justed an­nual rate ticked up to 17.88 mil­lion units, com­pared with 17.59 mil­lion in July 2015, it said.

Bar­clay’s economist Jesse Hur­witz said July sales beat the me­dian con­sen­sus es­ti­mate of 17.3 mil­lion.

Honda sales were up 4.4pc and Nis­san was up 1.2pc. GM, the biggest US au­tomaker, re­mained optimistic thanks to a 5pc gain in re­tail sales as it shifts away from fleet sales.

De­clines among some of the largest play­ers sug­gested that six con­sec­u­tive years of sales gains may be slow­ing.

With gaso­line prices low, de­mand re­mained strong for fuel-guz­zling sport-util­ity ve­hi­cles and trucks.

Honda, GM, Toy­ota and Nis­san touted the pop­u­lar­ity of their SUVs, while also re­port­ing gains among cheaper sedans.

Lux­ury car­maker BMW posted a drop in sales of 5pc. Volk­swa­gen con­tin­ued a pre­cip­i­tous sales drop as it tries to re­cover from its diesel emis­sions-cheat­ing scan­dal. July US sales of VW ve­hi­cles fell 8.1pc year-over-year. –

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