Zero percent interest programs introduced in the last half of the month by the Big Three were enough to create a larger-than-normal sales surge in the final week of September, and keep the month’s results from falling off the shelf in the wake of the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center (see insert). And early indications suggest that momentum is carrying into October. Although September’s 15.83 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) was the lowest monthly SAAR since November ...

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