China's Auto Sales – Kicking Into Gear?

Wednesday, 8 Apr 2009 | 3:53 PM ET

It's no secret that China was bound to eventually overtake the U.S. as the world's largest auto market, but recent developments have accelerated that trend. Chinese vehicle sales in January and February exceeded U.S. monthly sales for the first time ever.

And now, preliminary figures show the trend continuing. Auto sales in China reached about 1.03 million in March, exceeding U.S. sales for the third month in a row.

Data from 14 major auto makers, accounting for roughly 90 percent of total sales, totaled 1.026 million, the Shanghai Securities News and other state-run newspapers said, citing Chen Bin, head of the Department of Industry at China's main economic planning agency.

Fast Money Final Call
The auto parts makers getting a helping hand from Washington, with Tim Seymour, Seygem Asset Management and CNBC's Bob Pisani.

By comparison, Americans bought 857,735 new vehicles in March, down 37 percent from the 1.36 million sold in the same month a year earlier, according to Autodata Corp.

What’s the trade?

If you watch Fast Money regularly you know that Tim Seymour likes to play autos downstream with steel and aluminum plays. He says capacity is coming out of the market and when there’s a strong uptick in demand for cars, they should win.

As a resultSeymour says, Alcoa, Posco , ArcelorMittal Gerdau are all names worth keeping on your radar.

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