Automakers post better than expected sales in August despite one less selling day and a later Labor Day holiday. Shartia Brantley reports.
Shiny, new models lured U.S. consumers to dealerships in August as automakers post better than expected results, despite one less selling day, compared to a year ago, and a later Labor Day holiday this year. And lower gas prices encouraged purchases of larger vehicles such as crossovers, SUVs and pickup trucks. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate or SAAR is expected to top 17 million vehicles for the fourth month in a row. Consumers are buying again after delaying purchases during the Great Recession, and sales are not expected to slow down anytime soon. Edmunds.com's Ed Hellwig: SOUNDBITE: ED HELLWIG, EXECUTIVE EDITOR, EDMUNDS.COM (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We're seeing the big sales numbers, and it's hard to tell if it's going to be a year or maybe a couple of years before that evens out. We had a lot of pent up demand for a long time. So, I think, you're going to still see a lot of replacement vehicles or replacement sales going on for quite sometime." However, Hellwig warns a spike in gas prices or continued volatility in the stock market could slow sales momentum.