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The United States' auto sales slump due to less affluent buyers

According to Cox Automotive, U.S. new vehicle sales could fall to the lowest level seen in the past decade as chip shortages and the Ukraine crisis squeeze inventory and higher prices push less affluent buyers out of the market, according to research.

Approximately 1.22 million autos and light trucks are expected to be sold in March, a decrease of more than 24 percent, and approximately 16 percent in the first quarter.

A recession should not hit the U.S. economy, according to Cox forecasters. According to Cox, U.S. car and light truck sales are expected to fall to 15.3 million vehicles in all of 2022, down 700,000 vehicles from its January forecast. Cox says even reaching the new target will require a significant improvement in supply chain disruptions.

"Make no mistake, this market is stuck in low gear," said Charlie Chesbrough, senior economist at Cox Automotive, adding that sales will remain at current levels until supply improves.

28 March 2022


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