Sales of new vehicles in Australia set a record for June as buyers rushed for bargains ahead of the end of the financial year, with consumers confident enough to splash out on big-ticket items even while cutting back elsewhere.
The Australian Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries said vehicle sales were up 5, 875 or 5.7 percent on June last year in unadjusted terms. June is usually a healthy month for sales as dealers discount to clear stock for the financial year.
Sales of 108, 722 were the highest for any June, beating the 2008 record of 106,541.
In raw terms, sales rose 21.9 percent compared to May, though after adjusting for seasonal factors sales dipped 3.1 percent.
Vehicle sales for the year to date were 531,168, to be 16.7 percent ahead of the same period in 2009.
The solid demand for cars contrasts markedly with softness in retail sales and suggests overall household consumption was not as weak some economists had feared.