U.S. buyers shrugged off economic worries and snapped up SUVs and pickups last month, surprising the auto industry and raising hopes that a bumpy year will end on a high note.
U.S. vehicle sales rose 10 percent from last September, according to Autodata Corp. September saw the fastest sales pace since April, and automakers expect that pace to stay steady for the rest of this year.
GM’s September sales rose 20 percent, led by a 34 percent rise in sales of full-size pickups and SUVs. Chrysler’s sales rose 27 percent, while Ford’s were up 9 percent.
Honda and Toyota continued to struggle with product shortages. Toyota’s September sales were down 17.5 percent, while Honda’s fell 8 percent.
Canada’s finance minister Jim Flaherty said Monday he has taken steps to promote Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney as the next head of the Financial Stability Board, which is responsible for crafting new global banking regulations.
The minister said he hopes the appointment is made next month when the current head of the Financial Stability Board, Italy’s Mario Draghi, moves to the European Central Bank.Carney has been a strong advocate of new, stringent regulations for banks.
The latest setback in Europe’s financial crisis sent stocks sharply lower on Monday. The S&P 500, the benchmark for most U.S. stock funds, slumped to its lowest level of the year.
Markets fell worldwide after Greece said it will miss deficit reduction targets it agreed to as part of its bailout deal. The concerns overshadowed a stronger reading on U.S. manufacturing.
Nine stocks fell for every one that rose on the New York Stock Exchange.