June Gloom

The auto manufacturer reported U.S. auto sales for June on Tuesday, and it wasn’t pretty. Sales plunged 18.3 percent from a year ago, as consumers—beset by inflation, credit woes and sky-high gas prices—stayed away from car lots.

For the first six months, sales are down 10.9 percent year over year, which represents the worst half-year auto sales performance since at least 1993.

The losses at the majors: Chrysler LLC – down 35.9% Ford Motor Co. – down 27.8% Toyota Motor Corp. – down 21.4% General Motors – down 18.2% Nissan Motor Co. – down 17.7% Honda Motor Co. – up 1.1%

All three Detroit manufacturers are working to reduce production of their largest vehicles, though lack of availability of small cars hurt sales.

Some predicted that Toyota would, for the first time, sell more cars in a month than GM. However, GM reported selling 262,329 vehicles for the month, compared with Toyota's 193,234.

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