After improving for 23 consecutive quarters, dealers in the state counted four fewer vehicle registrations in third quarter of this year than they did in the third quarter of 2015 - 531,514 between July and September in 2016 compared with 531,518 in that same period last year.
“It’s razor thin,” said Brian Maas, president of the California New Car Dealers Assn., the Sacramento-based organization that compiles the data. “It’s almost like one of those recount elections.”
The winning streak started in 2010, when auto dealers in California showed their first tentative signs of life in the wake of the Great Recession that saw annual vehicle registrations drop to barely more than 1 million.
By contrast, even with the winning streak ended, 2016 vehicle registrations have already reached 1.57 million.
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