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Steve Chiotakis: We’re set to get a bunch of economic indicators this week. Among them, October auto sales figures come out tomorrow. And for the first time in a long time, one company’s expected to make a decent showing. And analysts are predicting General Motors will have some excellent numbers when it reports. Alisa Roth checks it out.
Alisa Roth: Let’s get one thing straight: nobody’s suggesting this is going to be a banner month for auto sales. Robert Schulz follows the auto industry at Standard and Poors.
Robert Schulz: We’re still expecting the year to be significantly below last year.
He guesses total sales for the year will be around 10.2 million. They were 13.2 million last year. He says the market’s probably already going back up. But car companies are still having a hard time of it.
Or most of them are, anyway. Jeff Schuster is in charge of forecasting at JD Power.
Jeff Schuster: It’s a very strong month for GM.
He says GM’s sales numbers are up more than anybody else’s. And it’s beating its own numbers, too: It looks like it sold more cars this October than last — the first time that’s happened in almost two years.
SCHUSTER: They’re seeing a strong response to the marketing programs that are out there, primarily on the truck side.
Schuster says GM’s smaller cars have also sold well. He says one month isn’t a trend yet. But he thinks this month’s numbers are a good sign for GM.
I’m Alisa Roth for Marketplace.