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New vehicle sales are on the rise, says report

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March new vehicle sales in the U.S. are expected to increase by 25% vs. the same period one year ago, according to a recent J.D. Power and Associates report.

"March new vehicle retail sales are expected to come in at 883,000 units, which represents a seasonally adjusted, annualized rate of 9.9 million units," say J.D. Power officials. "Compared with March 2009, retail sales are projected to increase by 2.3 million units."

Jeff Schuster, executive director of global forecasting for J.D. Power, says new vehicle sales "increased robustly during the first half of March and are expected to remain strong throughout the remainder of the month, setting the industry recovery back on track. March sales could outperform projections if the pace does not level off as expected for the remainder of the month."

North American vehicle production also is on the rise, according to J.D. Power. February 2010 volume reached 922,000 units, a 57% jump from February 2009. For the first quarter of 2010, "production is on target to reach 2.8 million units, an increase of 70% from the same period one year ago. Production volume for 2010 overall is expected to increase 25% to 10.6 million from 8.5 million in 2009."

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