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[LONDON] British new car registrations fell for only the second time in over four years in June, when Britain held its European Union membership referendum, and an industry body urged the government to boost economic confidence to avoid further drops.
Sales in June fell 0.8 per cent year-on-year to 255,766 units, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said on Wednesday. It said it was too early to link the fall to the shock result of the referendum in favour of leaving the EU.
Although car deliveries typically occur several weeks after purchase decisions and most of June's sales happened before the June 23 vote, there is normally a push by manufacturers at the end of each month to boost figures as much as possible, meaning the Brexit vote could have hit end-of-month demand.
Ratings agency Fitch said on Tuesday that there will probably be a decline in British new vehicle sales due to slower economic growth and weaker consumer confidence.