According to participants in the Chicago Fed’s annual Automotive Outlook Symposium
, the nation’s economic growth is forecasted to be near its long-term average this year and to strengthen somewhat in 2017. Inflation is expected to increase in both 2016 and 2017. The unemployment rate is anticipated to edge lower through the end of 2017, reaching 4.8% by then. Light vehicle sales are predicted to be flat, at 17.3 million units, in 2016 and decrease slightly in 2017.