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New car sales down 9.1% in October: FCAI

Michael Mehr
FCAI says the industry was unable to stem the decline in new car sales in October

New car sales have gone backwards for the 19th month in a row, the country's peak motor industry group says.

The number of vehicles sold across Australia last month was down 9.1 per cent compared to October 2018, according to a tally issued by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) on Wednesday, following a 6.9 per cent slide in September.

"The FCAI and our members have been concerned about the risk-averse approach to lending in Australia for some time and see improved access to finance as a key to driving economic growth in 2020," FCAI chief executive Tony Weber said.

FCAI said sales to private individuals fell 5.2 per cent, business sales slumped 8.2 per cent and purchases by government were down 7.3 per cent in October when contrasted with the same month in 2018.

Sales in October dropped by 21.1 per cent in the ACT, 19 per cent in the Northern Territory, 14.7 per cent in Tasmania, 11.4 per cent in South Australia, 10.3 per cent in WA, 8.8 per cent in Victoria, 8.5 per cent in NSW and 7.2 per cent in Queensland.

A total of 82,456 new cars were sold last month, a decline that averages out to 313 fewer vehicle sales each day than for the same period last year.