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Big 3 Auto Makers Report Good Sales Despite Wall Street Crash

November 04, 1987|From Reuters

DETROIT — The nation's Big Three auto makers today reported relatively strong sales of U.S.-built vehicles in late October that showed little apparent damage from the stock market collapse last month.

General Motors Corp., which has suffered some steep sales declines in recent months, said car sales in the Oct. 21-31 period fell 3.2%, while truck sales were up 31.5%.

It said car and truck sales for late October were as it had expected and it had seen no impact from the stock market fall.

Meanwhile, Ford Motor Co., which has been posting the strongest gains of Detroit's Big Three, said late-October car sales rose 15% and truck sales were up 55%.

Ford Vice President Thomas Wagner said showroom traffic had stopped briefly after the Black Monday stock plunge of Oct. 19 but had apparently returned to normal.

Chrysler Corp., the No. 3 auto maker, said late-October sales of its domestic-built cars fell 4%, while truck sales rose 19%.

Industry analysts and economists had been keenly anticipating the late-October figures for clues to the likely effect of the stock market plunge on consumer spending. The auto and housing industries tend to show the most immediate damage when consumer confidence turns sour.

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