Car sales down in France but French manufacturers bear up
Sales in the French car market rose by a disappointing 0.1 percent in May although French manufacturers did well, according to trade data released on Monday.
Car sales are considered an important indicator of business and household confidence.
The trade body of French carmakers, the CCFA, expects that for the whole of this year the number of new car sales will rally by 1.0 percent, but its spokesman said that this could be revised upwards next month.
The Renault group and PSA Peugeot Citroen, which has just opened up to Chinese group Dongfeng and the French state as shareholders, performed strongly in May despite a series of holiday weekends which undermined sales overall.
Foreign brands suffered, falling 6.2 percent as a whole.
148,573 new cars were registered in May, marking a rise of 0.1 percent from the level a year ago, allowing for calendar differences in the number of working days.
This was sharply down from growth of 8.9 percent in March and 5.8 percent in April.
However, sales by Peugeot Citroen rose by 3.9 percent in May and sales by Renault, which controls Japanese Nissan and owns the Romanian low-cost brand Dacia, rose by 9.0 percent.
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