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China’s Vehicle Inventory Alert Index edges down to 52.8% in Aug.

China's Vehicle Inventory Alert Index (VIA) stood at 52.8% in August, which declined 9.9 and 0.5 percentage points compared to the previous month and to the previous year respectively, according to the China Automobile Dealers Association (CADA).

The VIA in August was still above the official warning threshold.

Last month, China's automobile sales were further promoted as the domestic economy maintained a positive momentum and the demands of rural markets were somewhat unleashed thanks to the roll-out of the “bringing automobiles to the countryside” policy, said the CADA. Supported by OEMs' various marketing policies, dealers were dashing with all their might to fulfill annual sales goals, which also propped up the national automobile sales growth.

Other factors contributing to the auto sales rebound included the “8.18 Shopping Festival”, the frequent roll-out of new vehicle models, the rigid demands for automobiles during the back-to-school season.  

Although OEMs launched more and greater marketing policies to help dealers clear inventories out, some dealerships still earned less profit as they offered bigger discounts to lift sales.

The VIAs of the mainstream joint-venture brands and the China's self-owned brands reached 54.7% and 56.3% in August respectively, 10.6 and 4.9 percentage points lower than the month-ago level. Notably, the index of the imported and luxury brands dropped 11.5 percentage points month on month to 46.5%, standing within a prosperity range.

The automobile market is forecasted to post a greater rising momentum in September because of such positive factors as the traditional peak season for car shopping, the roll-out of new products and the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition that has been delayed to late September, said the association.