Second Quarter U.S. Car Sales Decrease Due To Pandemic

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U.S. car sales are estimated to have fallen by close to one third during the second quarter due to the coronavirus.

Released sales figures from the auto industry show that both quarters in 2020 have experienced declines in sales, leading to projections of yearly sales falling below 14 million this year, according to the Wall Street Journal. A slew of automakers released their second quarter figures on Wednesday. General Motors saw a 34% drop in sales during the second quarter, compared to sales figures the year prior. Fiat Chrysler’s sales declined by 39%.

However, the industry had expected a steeper decline, and current sales were cushioned both by the federal stimulus check and a wide range of lucrative promotions offered by automakers. Automakers had rolled out promotions including seven-year financing deals that have not been seen since the recession.

Additionally, car sales are suffering from the parallel decline in inventory. The coronavirus forced production factories to close down temporarily and production rates have not caught up to address inventory shortages.

The marketplace is growing less inviting,” said Jessica Caldwell, an analyst for Edmunds.com. “Current sales paint an optimistic picture given the circumstances, but between Covid-19 and today’s politically charged climate, the industry needs to prepare for uncertainties ahead.”

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