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U.S. auto sales are falling for the fourth month in a row

On Monday major automakers reported a fourth consecutive month of lower U.S. new vehicle sales for June.

03.Jul.17 3:24 PM
By Daria Zaytseva


U.S. auto sales are falling for the fourth month in a row

Sales were below analystís expectations, despite the high consumer discounts and looser loan terms, giving the new evidence that 2017 will lag behind last year's record year for the industry.

However, shares in automakers rose, as retail sales to consumers were relatively stable at the U.S. automakers, with General Motors Co. asserting that the industry was set for a stronger finish to the year.

Autodata, industry consultant, put the industry's seasonally adjusted annualized rate of sales at 16.51 million units, which was the lowest level since February 2015. It came in below Wall Street expectations of 16.6 million vehicles and 2% lower than the June 2016 figure.

U.S. consumers continued to avoid passenger cars in favor of larger pickup trucks, SUVs and crossovers. Passenger car sales were also hurt as some automakers, including GM, have moved to reduce relatively low-margin sales to rental agencies.

The automotive industry in the U.S. has been intensified after hitting a record 17.55 million new vehicles sold in 2016. A glut of nearly new used cars creates competition for new vehicle sales and automakers have relied increasingly on consumer discounts and loosened lending terms.

Edmunds, car shopping website, said the average length of a car loan reached a record high of 69.3 months in June.

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