J.D. Power and LMC Automotive are predicting that U.S. auto sales will hit 1.71 million this month, the highest number since sales reached 1.8 million in July of 2005. The companies say this week’s quarter-point interest rate increase will have only a minimal impact on auto sales. The strong December virtually assures that U.S. sales will set an annual record of 17.5 million this year.
December traditionally is a strong car and truck sales month with consumers taking advantage of year-end and holiday deals. The companies expect people to spend over $44 billion on new vehicles in December and $437 billion in 2015, both of which would be new records.