(Image Source: Flickr/las - initially)

BY VICTORIA CRAIG
 

ANCHOR MEGAN MURPHY

Could it be a sign the U.S. economy is strengthening? Despite surging seasonal high gas prices, consumer auto sales are on the rise. Bloomberg reports.

“March auto sales figures are in and Chrysler said that U.S. sales climbed 34 percent, better than many estimates. GM and Ford came in below expectations. GM sales rose just 12 percent, Ford’s gain was about five percent.”

New car and truck sales reached about 1.37 million in March. That’s six percent more than March of last year and is the highest number since May 2008. CNBC explains why consumers are back in the market for new cars.

“The factors driving sales early in the year continued last month. Americans who couldn't bear a new car payment during the economic downturn are back on the market. They’re leaning toward new compacts and sub-compacts to save on gas, although incentives on trucks are good enough to lure buyers who want something bigger.”

But it’s not just replacing gas-guzzlers with more fuel efficient options. The LA Times breaks down other factors motivating people to buy new.

“An improving job market and the rally on Wall Street are providing buy signs for consumers … Easier credit is helping people to purchase cars … Hyundai Motor America, for example, said it is seeing a return of buyers using home equity to help finance purchases, a financial strategy that fell off when real 

The better than expected sales reports lead many industry leaders to set high expectations for the rest of the year. CNNMoney reports.

“The strong start to the year has led some analysts to raise their sales targets to nearly 15 million vehicles for 2012, up from 12.8 million last year. That's a much faster rebound to that benchmark than analysts anticipated even as recently as last year...Part of the strong sales for the Detroit automakers came from the fact that they have much stronger offerings in the small car segment of the market than they previously did.”

The New York Times reports -- not only do analysts expect sales to continue to perform well, but car manufacturers will also increase production to keep up with the growing demand.

Rising U.S. Auto Sales Signal Economic Improvement

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Apr 4, 2012

Rising U.S. Auto Sales Signal Economic Improvement

(Image Source: Flickr/las - initially)

BY VICTORIA CRAIG
 

ANCHOR MEGAN MURPHY

Could it be a sign the U.S. economy is strengthening? Despite surging seasonal high gas prices, consumer auto sales are on the rise. Bloomberg reports.

“March auto sales figures are in and Chrysler said that U.S. sales climbed 34 percent, better than many estimates. GM and Ford came in below expectations. GM sales rose just 12 percent, Ford’s gain was about five percent.”

New car and truck sales reached about 1.37 million in March. That’s six percent more than March of last year and is the highest number since May 2008. CNBC explains why consumers are back in the market for new cars.

“The factors driving sales early in the year continued last month. Americans who couldn't bear a new car payment during the economic downturn are back on the market. They’re leaning toward new compacts and sub-compacts to save on gas, although incentives on trucks are good enough to lure buyers who want something bigger.”

But it’s not just replacing gas-guzzlers with more fuel efficient options. The LA Times breaks down other factors motivating people to buy new.

“An improving job market and the rally on Wall Street are providing buy signs for consumers … Easier credit is helping people to purchase cars … Hyundai Motor America, for example, said it is seeing a return of buyers using home equity to help finance purchases, a financial strategy that fell off when real 

The better than expected sales reports lead many industry leaders to set high expectations for the rest of the year. CNNMoney reports.

“The strong start to the year has led some analysts to raise their sales targets to nearly 15 million vehicles for 2012, up from 12.8 million last year. That's a much faster rebound to that benchmark than analysts anticipated even as recently as last year...Part of the strong sales for the Detroit automakers came from the fact that they have much stronger offerings in the small car segment of the market than they previously did.”

The New York Times reports -- not only do analysts expect sales to continue to perform well, but car manufacturers will also increase production to keep up with the growing demand.

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