January 8, 2019 / 6:45 AM / a year ago

India December retail passenger vehicle sales down 3 pct on year: dealer body

Hyundai cars ready for shipment are parked at a port in Chennai, October 1, 2013. REUTERS/Babu/Files

(Reuters) - India’s retail passenger vehicles sales for December fell 3 percent from a year ago, while two-wheeler sales rose 11 percent, according to data from the car dealers’ association.

The data, based on vehicle registrations, was released by the Federation of Automobile Dealers Association (FADA).

“We hope that it will act as a barometer for the industry as well as for the policy makers and help understand the on-the-ground situation of auto sales,” Ashish Harsharaj Kale, president of FADA, said in a statement.

Dealers are holding 35-40 days worth of inventory for passenger vehicles and 55-60 days worth of inventory for two-wheelers, according to a survey conducted by FADA.

Around one month’s inventory is a healthy level which dealers routinely maintain, Kale told Reuters, adding that he hoped scooter and bike manufacturers reduce their wholesales to dealers in January to help rationalise the stock.

Kale said the recent slowdown in lending by non-banking financial companies or shadow banks had hit sales of cars, two-wheelers and commercial vehicles like trucks as some buyers struggled to get finance to make purchases.

Passenger vehicle sales from April to December fell 2 percent from a year earlier, while two-wheeler sales rose 5 percent, the data showed.

Reporting by Aditi Shah; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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