News & Resources

U.S. auto sales rate accelerating

Jan 31, 2011 Brian Bradley

Car makers and auto dealers can expect a boost across all industry lines, according to a new report from Bloomberg. The latest data indicates that auto sales for January may reach their second-highest rate in the last 17 months, thanks to improving consumer confidence and business spending. Bloomberg forecasts that January vehicle deliveries could reach 12.4 million at an annual rate. That comes on the heels of December's 12.6 million seasonally adjusted rate - the quickest pace since August 2009 when the government-funded "cash for clunkers" program was in effect. "People are beginning to spend a little money they’ve had on the sidelines," Randy Humphrey, vice president of Humphrey & Associates, told Bloomberg. "We are dependent on our commercial and industrial clients and their business growth to make ours. When they’re adding, we’re adding." According to the Autodata Corporation, the number of cars sold in 2010 reached 11.6 million, but that figure falls short of the 16.8 million annual average prior to the recession. Meanwhile, U.S. consumer confidence rose to an eight-month high, the Conference Board reported last week.