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July Auto Sales: Good Or Bad, Depending

2010 Chevrolet Cobalts at a Denver-area dealership. David Zalubowski/AP hide caption

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David Zalubowski/AP

For those who like a choice between optimism and pessimism in their economic news, the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg News gladly obliged.

Here's how The Wall Street Journal's headline and summary handled Tuesday's release of July auto sales data:

GM's July Sales Rose 6%; Ford's Up 5%

General Motors said its U.S. sales rose 6% in July, while Ford's climbed 5%, as the industry's turnaround resumed after a disappointing June.

And here's Bloomberg News' more downbeat take:

GM, Ford July Sales Trail Estimates as Shoppers Shun Cars

General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. reported U.S. sales in July that trailed analysts’ estimates as customers concerned about the economy avoided large purchases.

Reuters goes with the idea that July demonstrated that the auto industry's turnaround was still alive, which is significant since there were some analysts who feared after a bad June that the industry had lost its brakes as it was heading downhill again.

An excerpt:

Auto executives said the early sales numbers for July eased concern that the industry could be tipping back toward recession after weaker-than-expected June sales results.

"In June, you had the feeling that maybe the industry wasn't out of the woods, and there was a lot of talk of a double-dip. But June really seems to have been a blip," said Al Castignetti, head of Nissan brand sales in the U.S. market.