The Japanese are usually first to report last month’s sales numbers. This time: Very bad. New car sales in Japan fell 30.7 percent in November. After Japan’s generous subsidies were withdrawn, the market is down for the third straight month, and there is no end in sight.
According to The Nikkei [sub], citing numbers of the Japan Automobile Dealers Association, sales totaled 203,246 vehicles. Passenger vehicles fell 33.5 percent, trucks went down 10.7 percent. The Japanese program was no cash for clunkers scheme and definitely pulled sales forward. It will be a while until this market recovers.