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Car sales may improve next year

Car sales may improve next year

More drivers may be looking at car insurance policies in the near future to couple with a potential new vehicle purchase.

There could be as many as 16.4 million units sold next year, according to a projection from Edmunds.com. The level would be the highest achieved since 2006, when car sales reached 16.5 million units. The figure could be 6 percent higher than the 15.5 million units forecasted to be sold this year. Even with the gain, this could actually be slower than any yearly improvement since sales started to ramp up after the low in 2009.

"The average age of all light vehicles on the road climbed to 11.4 years in 2013, and an aging fleet will continue to force buyers back to the market next year," said Dr. Lacey Plache, chief economist for Edmunds.com. "With used car prices still elevated over past norms and used car supply still tight, the new car market will remain attractive to many of these buyers."

Another aspect of the market that could improve in the next year is the number of leases. This figure could increase by an additional 300,000, as there will be close to 500,000 more leases that will expire this year compared to last year.

Vehicle sales drop during September
Even with a projected increase in sales this year and next, the market may be in the middle of a slowdown, though this may just be a temporary issue.

Total vehicle transactions fell by nearly 2 percent in September compared to the same month in 2012, a report from Kelley Blue Book (KBB) explained. This brought the month's figure to 1.17 million units sold. This measurement was also more than 22 percent lower than the previous month. However, the drop may only be temporary, as there was a sales month issue due to not counting the holiday weekend last month.

"September 2013 new-vehicle sales represent the first year-over-year drop since May 2011, due to slower retail sales, two fewer sales days in the month, and this year's Labor Day sales included in August 2013 totals," said Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst at KBB. "Despite the cool down this month, Kelley Blue Book forecasts sales will remain on track to exceed 15.6 million units in 2013 because of strong product introductions from automakers."


 
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