SAO PAULO, Aug 3 (Reuters) - New auto sales in Brazil remained weak in July as rising interest rates and unemployment eroded consumer confidence, contributing to a deepening crisis in the industry responsible for a fifth of the country’s industrial output.
Sales of cars, trucks and buses fell 23 percent from a year earlier to 227,621 vehicles last month, national dealership association Fenabrave said on Monday.
An extra two working days lifted sales from June by 7 percent, but the daily pace of sales slipped below 10,000 vehicles, making it the slowest July since 2007.
Brazil is one of the world’s five biggest auto markets, with major operations for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, Volkswagen AG, General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co, whose earnings have suffered in the slump.
Sales are unlikely to pick up in the months ahead, Fenabrave President Alarico Assumpção Júnior said in a statement accompanying the monthly data, affirming the group’s forecast of a roughly 20 percent drop in sales this year. (Reporting by Alberto Alerigi Jr.; Editing by Dan Grebler)