National auto loan rates for Feb. 16, 2012

Interest Rate Roundup
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Auto Loans

  • 5.2% (60-month, new car)
  • 6.19% (36-month, used car)

It's good to be a car shopper these days. Auto loan rates fell to record lows across the board this week. The average rate for a 48-month new-car loan fell 5 basis points to 5.12 percent, while the average rate for a 60-month new-car loan was down 4 basis points to 5.2 percent. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point.

Used-car loan rates also fell to record lows. The average rate for a 36-month used-car loan sliced off 3 basis points to 6.19 percent.

U.S. auto sales per dealership may break records this year, according to a report by Urban Science, an industry consulting firm. The firm projects per-dealer sales will rise more than 9 percent to 785 vehicles, and the annual decline in the number of dealerships will be reversed, at least for one year, thanks to strong sales. The number of U.S. dealerships had fallen sharply following the financial crisis, with 4.4 percent of dealers closing their doors in 2010.





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