STATE OF BUSINESS: The Car Buyers

Are auto sales keeping up with the record-breaking auto production? Last week the nation's dealers gave the answer: in the first eight weeks of 1955 they had pushed sales up to almost 1,000,000 cars, about 40% above last year and an alltime peak. Predicted Ford Economist George Hitchings: first-quarter sales will total 1,580,000 cars, 33% better than 1954.

Leading the sales field (with 45%-50% of the market) was General Motors, whose dealers had delivered 454,471 cars by Feb. 20. Ford's Lincoln-Mercury division reported that in one ten-day period of February its dealers sold 8,806 Mercurys, well above any similar period...

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