Auto Sales in US Fall During July as Rental Fleet Sales Slashed

Auto Sales in US Fall During July as Rental Fleet Sales Slashed

The U.S. annualized sales pace for cars and light trucks during July fell to just over 16.72 million vehicles compared to 17.8 million for the same period one year ago, showed data released by Autodata, Corp., which tracks sales in the industry.

Shares of most major automakers have trailed benchmark US stock indexes this year. General Motors Co fell about 3.5 percent and Ford Motor Co slid about 2.5 percent.

The annualized pace of US auto and light truck sales in July fell to 16.73 million vehicles, down from 17.8 million vehicles a year earlier, according to Autodata Corp, which tracks industry sales.

General Motors Co said on Tuesday it sold 25,852 vehicles in July in Canada, up 22 percent from a year earlier - a striking contrast to the company's performance in its home market.

The automakers have become quicker at idling a factory to lower supply, and they demand higher prices, said an industry official. The Explorer accounts for most of the production volume at the plant at Torrence Avenue and 126th Street, and sales have risen 6.4 percent to 137,224 through the first six months of the year.

Declining sales could leave the Detroit Three with too many plants in North America, Jeff Schuster, a forecaster with LMC Automotive, said on Tuesday at an industry conference in Traverse City, Mich. The automaker had 104 days of supply at the end of July, down from 105 days at the end of June. Toyota, however, was able to sell more, reporting a 3.6 percent sales gain.

Deliveries plunged 15 percent for GM and 10 percent for Fiat Chrysler, both bigger decreases than analysts projected in a Bloomberg News survey. Honda, Nissan and Volkswagen also reported a downturn. Ford shares were down three percent, and Fiat Chrysler was down 0.025 percent.

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