July 16 - European car sales fall again damping hopes of a recovery in an industry that has been pummelled by overcapacity and weak consumer demand. Sonia Legg reports.
6.3 percent is today's daily digit in Europe - the latest fall in new car sales. Less than 1.2m cars were registered last month - the lowest June figure for 17 years. The statistics from the Association of European Carmakers cover all 27 countries in the EU and others in the European Free Trade Association. They're broadly in line with a 6.7% decline in the first six months of the year - which was the lowest half year figure for two decades. The auto industry in Europe has long been suffering from overcapacity and weak consumer demand, largely due to austerity and unemployment. And the latest figures have dashed any hopes of a recovery. France saw one of the biggest falls (8.4%), with Italy just below the average. (5.5%) Even the German market, which largely resisted last year's slump, shrank significantly. (4.7%) BMW's CEO says he doesn't expect to see a pick-up until at least the middle of next year. Only Britain bucked the trend with an increase of more than 13% (13.4%) - a 16th straight month of gains