European Auto Sales in March Continue to Drop image

Auto sales in Europe continue to drop in March, making automaker expect more losses in the region.

Auto sales in France dropped 16.4% last month and 14.7% during the first quarter. One main reason for the decline in March would be the smaller number of working days compared with the same period last year, due to the Easter holidays. Adjusted to these changes, auto sales in France dropped 12.5% in March as 12% in the first quarter.

Spain continued to be affected by limited credit and high unemployment, a region which in the second recession in the past five years. Auto sales in Spain dropped 13.9% last month, after a 9.8% drop in February.

“The company car sector continues to be very worrying and continues to register falls of over 20 percent,” David Barrientos, head of communications for Anfac, wrote in a note.

Sales in Germany dropped 10.5% in February and a further drop is expected for March. Results for last month will be reported on Wednesday. Sales in Italy fell 17.4% in February and results for March are to be reported.

The March results show that the crisis still affects auto sales in the region and that automakers will continue to struggle with low demand. Unfortunately, even if some car makers came up with restructuring plans, they were often met with opposition from governments, due to increased unemployment.