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Chinese Auto Sales Continue to Fall

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Sept. 14, 2018—Chinese auto sales fell for a second month in August, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday. And, those struggling sales add to signs of economic malaise amid China's tariff battle with the U.S.

Sales of SUVs, sedans and minivans in the biggest global auto market decreased by 4.6 percent from a year earlier to 1.8 million units, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. Total vehicle sales, including trucks and vehicles like buses, fell 2.1 percent to 2 million units.

Chinese auto demand has cooled as economic growth slows after Beijing tightened controls on bank lending to calm surging debt. Sedan sales alone were down 3.4 percent, to 901,000 units.

China’s tariff battle with U.S. President Donald Trump over its technology policy has added to concerns, though the overall economic impact so far is rather limited. Weak demand is a setback for global manufacturers that look to China to drive revenue and are spending heavily to develop models that cater to the Chinese market.

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