Sales paced at an anemic 9.6 million seasonally adjusted annual rate in January, marking the lowest level since June 1982. Auto makers delivered just 655,000 cars and light trucks during the month, down 39.4% compared with year-ago on a daily rate basis (26 selling days this year vs. 25 in 2008). January’s weak annualized rate illustrates the extent of the auto industry’s sudden downward spiral. Only a year ago, the monthly SAAR was 15.3 million, which was considered low at the time and ...

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