Rolling over: Housing starts, Consumer Confidence, Auto sales, Rail traffic

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by WARREN MOSLER

Rolling over:

 

Also rolling over, and inline with the drop in retail sales:

U.S. auto sales are falling as vehicle prices climb, indicating that buyers at the lower end are getting squeezed out of the new car market, according to a new industry forecast.

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First-quarter auto sales are expected to drop by nearly 2.5 percent from a year earlier, to 4 million units, according to J.D. Power and LMC Automotive.

Retail sales, which exclude sales to rental car companies and other commercial businesses, are expected to drop by about 5 percent to 2.9 million units. It’s the first time first-quarter retail sales are projected to fall short of 3 million units in six years, said Thomas King, senior vice president of J.D. Power’s data and analytics division.

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