NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 07/04/12 -- The auto industry has seen a slow but steady recovery since the lows of 2009. Auto sales in June rose to an annualized sales rate of 14.1 million vehicles according to Autodata Corp. Shares of U.S. automakers surged Tuesday after General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC reported auto sales for June that beat analysts' estimates. The Paragon Report examines investing opportunities in the Auto Manufacturers Industry and provides equity research on Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) and General Motors Company (NYSE: GM).
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"A lot of analysts -- ourselves included -- were cautious going into June with the unemployment rate inching up, consumer confidence dropping and the volatility going on in Europe," Alec Gutierrez, an analyst at Kelley Blue Book, said in a telephone interview. "It's just a testament to the strength of consumer demand for new vehicles despite all the negative news out there."
Auto sales have seen a slow but steady recovery since hitting a 27-year low of 10.4 million vehicles in 2009. U.S. auto sales are currently on pace for their best year since 2007, when 16.1 million vehicles were sold.
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Ford's 7.1 percent sales increase in June beat the analysts' average estimates of a 3.5 percent gain. "June was a good month for Ford and a particularly strong month for vehicles like Escape, Fusion, Explorer and F-Series," said Ken Czubay, Ford vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. "The new 2013 Escape also is off to a very strong start, with vehicles selling on dealer lots in less than five days -- even topping the strong start of the new Explorer in 2010."
Shares of General Motors surged nearly 6 percent after the company reported June sales increased by 16 percent. The average estimate of 11 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was 7.6 percent. According to a recent Reuters article GM and Facebook are discussing the possible return of advertisements on the popular social network's site.
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