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Auto loan rates for Aug. 30, 2012

Claes Bell

Interest Rate Roundup

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Auto Loans

  • 4.37% (60-month, new car)
  • 5.01% (36-month, used car)

Auto loan rates inched downward this week, beating the record lows they set last week. The average rate for a 60-month new-car loan chopped off 1 basis point, ending at a record-low 4.37 percent, in Bankrate's weekly survey.

The 48-month new-car loan average was down more sharply, losing 2 basis points to 4.23 percent, also a new record. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point.

Used-car loans also tumbled below last week's record lows, with the average rate for a 36-month used-car loan falling 3 basis points to 5.01 percent.

This week, the Obama administration announced it has finalized stringent new fuel-economy standards that will gradually raise the efficiency of the U.S. auto fleet to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. The administration claims the new standards, which nearly double present fuel-economy standards, will save consumers more than $1.7 trillion in fuel and reduce U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels.

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