The Marketplace Reader

More hot wheels

Lori Stassi Sep 5, 2008

Call it reverse sticker shock. A report by JP Morgan auto analysts says the average price of a new vehicle fell more than 2 percent in the second quarter this year compared to a year earlier to $25,632. It’s the steepest decline JP Morgan has seen since it started analyzing car prices 41 years ago.

Apparently, Americans are bypassing the trucks and SUVs, and going for the smaller, more fuel efficient and less expensive models.

Of course, all of this is little comfort to automakers, because in this economy, fewer people are buying. With slumping sales, those lower prices are squeezing profit margins. But analysts say the prospect of a spending less for a new car could help boost sales when the economy recovers.

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