Auto Sales Rev Up

Tuesday, November 1, 2011 - 2:37pm

Last month saw sharp spike in car sales.

Economic concerns continue to dog the overall recovery, but there are signs Americans are willing to spend.

In October auto sales zipped along with consumers buying more cars and trucks than in previous months.

Still, analysts say the good news out on the road is not an overall indicator the nation is back on track.

"We're hopeful, average price of a car is $30,000, so if they are comfortable making that purchase then other areas of their life must be improving," says analyst Jessica Caldwell.

For the rest of the economy the signals are still mixed.

Orders for manufacturing slowed in October, an unexpected dip from the previous month and more evidence factories are struggling to rebound from a boost earlier this year.

Consumers are the biggest driving force in the economy and in recent months Americans have pulled back on spending, from retail to long-term investments like homes.

The jump in sales for automakers in October, analysts say, could be the result of pent-up demand.

"We could expect to see a bit of a plateau later in 2012," Caldwell warns. "We'll still have good year-over-year growth, but it won't be at the pace that we've seen of the past few months.

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