As credit expands and consumer confidence rises, January's car sales may reach levels not seen in 17 months.
Car sales have already been on the rise in previous months, with December's annualized rate reaching 12.6 million – the fastest since the "cash for clunkers" program of August 2009, according to Bloomberg.
Consumer confidence in January rose to levels not seen in eight months, the Conference Board reported, and this renewed confidence in the economy may have prompted many consumers to make the car purchase they were putting off in previous months.
Expanding car financing options have also made it easier for consumers to buy a new vehicle.
"Interest rates are low enough, credit availability is improving, and we didn’t get a jolt from tax increases that would have affected higher-income taxpayers who buy a lot of vehicles," explained Paul Ballew, chief economist for Nationwide Mutual Insurance.