China’s auto sales fall in November for fifth month


Beijing (AP) — A contraction in China’s auto market deepened in November as sales fell for a fifth month amid an economic slowdown and consumer anxiety over a tariff fight with the USA.

Sales of SUVs, sedans and minivans in the global industry’s biggest market plunged 16 percent from a year ago to just under 2.2 million, an industry group, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, reported.

Sales for the 11 months through November were down 2.8 percent from a year earlier at 21.5 million. That puts annual sales on track to shrink for the first time in three decades.

The slump is a setback for global automakers that look to China to drive revenue and are spending heavily to meet government targets to develop electric vehicles.

China is a top market for General Motors Co., Volkswagen AG and other industry majors that look to increasingly prosperous Chinese customers to drive revenue growth. They are spending billions of dollars to develop models to appeal to local tastes.