SAO PAULO, March 1 Brazilian car sales slowed in
February to their weakest pace in nearly a year, according to a
source with access to market data, as holidays and the gradual
removal of tax breaks sapped demand.
Sales of cars and light trucks fell 6 percent from a year
earlier to about 222,800 vehicles in Brazil, the world's
fourth-largest auto market, the source said. Sales dropped 25
percent from January, which had nearly an extra week of working
days due in part to the Carnival holiday in February.
Dealership association Fenabrave generally reports industry
sales data in the first week of each month.
The government is also gradually withdrawing emergency tax
cuts for the auto industry meant to spur demand in a sector that
makes up more than one-fifth of the country's industrial output
and 5 percent of its economy.
Some economists have warned the measures would lift
short-term demand at the cost of sales when the stimulus
About 70 percent of Brazil's sales going to Italy's Fiat SpA
, Germany's Volkswagen AG and U.S.-based
General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co.