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June Sales Show Just How Slow the Summer Could Be

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First of all, let's be clear about June auto sales.

Yes, everyone will be up compared to June of last year.

Big deal.

June of last year the economy was even further in the tank, GM and Chrysler were in bankruptcy, and the auto industry was gasping.

Spare me the hoopla about year over year sales improving. In my book, it means nothing.

What is more intriguing is comparing the daily sales rate of June with the daily sales rate of May.

This is a better indication of how dealers are doing, and right now those dealers are going into the Summer with slower sales.

Look at the numbers:

Daily Sales Rate June '10
GM (down) 8.3%
Chrysler (down) 8.3%
Ford: (down) 7 %

This is the latest indication the consumer is pulling back and it doesn't bode well for July and August sales.

Later today we'll find out the monthly sales rate for the industry in June. Many are predicting it will be under 11 million, and I won't be surprised to see that happen. That's worrisome.

If auto sales trend lower this summer, it calls into doubt whether the industry pace can hit 11.5 million for the year, as many have projected.

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