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U.S. auto sales remain steady amid government uncertainty

Posted on Thursday, October 3, 2013 at 10:58:05 AM

September was another solid month for the U.S. auto industry. Sales remained steady, with figures closing in on a pace last seen more than six years ago.

However, the recent government shutdown may impact sales and buyers using auto financing - although the real effect might not be know yet, according to Bloomberg.

Deliveries of vehicles dropped for the month, down by more than 4 percent. While Labor Day sales factoring into August - not September - may be the cause of these results, the decline is the first in over two years. The biggest threat to sales growth is uncertainty, and the government shutdown is just that.

"Any type of disruption in government operations would adversely affect government spending, business and consumer confidence, and financial markets," Jenny Lin, senior economist at Ford Motor Co., told reporters and analysts, the media outlet reported.

Even as the current situation may be on the minds of many with auto financing, September's sales were still strong, although they progressed at a slightly slower pace. The annual sales rate was 15.28 million vehicles, according to Reuters.

That figure is in line with many analyst expectations, although it is a decline from August's rate of 16.09 million. For the month, GM saw sales drop while Ford reported an increase of 5.8 percent on a yearly basis.