Car Sales Recovering?
J.D. Power says flailing car market has slowed its sinking
Even though Cash for Clunkers has long since come to a close, dealers are still offering some serious incentives of their own. General Motors has even taken to offering its vehicles with a 60-day money-back guarantee -- if you don’t like it, the company will let you bring the car back. Not every car company out there is being quite so extreme, but nearly every model has large rebates or excellent financing rates. Since the year is coming to a close, most dealers are anxious to get rid of their remaining 2009 stock, too, which may mean large discounts.
Speaking of financing, banks and other lenders are finally beginning to hand out cash to qualified borrowers again. Part of that is thanks to a huge infusion of federal funds, but growing consumer confidence has banks thinking more loans are a good thing. Not everyone will be able to walk up to a bank and expect to come out with bags filled with $100 bills, though. If you’re planning on pursuing a loan, expect a more thorough review process than you would have found a year ago.
The bottom line is that while unemployment isn’t rebounding, the economy -- and the automotive industry -- is beginning to. J.D. Power says that 2009 is on track to see seasonally adjusted sales of around 10.3 million total units, with things only looking up from there in 2010. It remains to be seen whether car sales will be able to keep up that pace without the kind of intervention we saw from Cash for Clunkers, though.
(Source: J.D. Power)
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