News & Resources

Auto industry getting back on its feet, reports suggest

Dec 11, 2011 Randy Mosteller

A slew of recent economic reports have effectively laid to rest fears of a double-dip recession in the fourth quarter. While a number of challenges remain, principally in the housing and labor markets, significant improvements in once-ailing sectors such as the U.S. auto industry have excited analysts. This week, Bloomberg reported the auto industry is on track for its best sales year in three years, with 12.8 million new vehicles sold. Experts point to mounting demand among consumers, who are beginning to dip back into their pockets for new car purchases. "The industry has managed production levels to where demand was this year and didn't get ahead of itself," Jeff Schuster, an analyst at LMC Automotive, told Bloomberg. "With inventory now being replenished, it's not a situation where we're seeing too much production or seeing heavy incentive use." Last week, reported the average transaction price in November for light vehicles in the U.S. was $30,317 - up $164, or 0.5 percent, from the previous month. The hike in prices likely reflects the surge in consumer activity and credit decisions.