Oc­to­ber sales fall as boom slows

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - BUSINESS - By Tom Krisher and Dee-Ann Durbin AP Auto Writ­ers

DETROIT >> It’s a chilly au­tumn for U.S. auto sales.

Sales of new cars and trucks fell an es­ti­mated 4 per­cent in Oc­to­ber as con­sumer de­mand waned, ac­cord­ing to Au­to­data Corp.

Hyundai and Subaru both re­ported 4-per­cent sales in­creases from last Oc­to­ber. But Gen­eral Mo­tors’ sales fell 2 per­cent, Toy­ota’s sales were down 9 per­cent and Fiat Chrysler’s sales dropped 10 per­cent. Honda’s sales fell 4 per­cent and Nis­san’s were down 2 per­cent. Volk­swa­gen’s sales fell 18.5 per­cent.

Ford Mo­tor Co. said its sales fig­ures would be de­layed un­til later in the week due to an elec­tri­cal fire at its head­quar­ters that stopped deal­ers from re­port­ing sales. Au­to­data es­ti­mated Ford’s sales fell 2 per­cent

U.S. auto sales re­main near their all-time highs, but af­ter six years of growth fol­low­ing the Great Re­ces­sion, they’re ta­per­ing off. Oc­to­ber was the fifth month of year-over-year sales drops in 2016, a sign this year could fall short of last year’s U.S. record of 17.5 mil­lion sales.

“The fact that re­tail sales are be­gin­ning to con­tract de­spite high in­cen­tives and ex­tremely low in­ter­est rates and gas prices is a clear in­di­ca­tor that this cy­cle has reached its peak,” said John Humphrey, se­nior vice pres­i­dent of J.D. Power’s global au­to­mo­tive prac­tice.

Sales fell even though au­tomak­ers in­creased av­er­age dis­counts per ve­hi­cle by 12 per­cent to $3,726 per ve­hi­cle, ac­cord­ing to J.D. Power. But the aver-

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