STOCKHOLM, July 4 (Reuters) - Volvo Car Group, owned by China's Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co, reported a 14.4 percent rise in first-half sales, putting it "firmly on course" to achieve another record for full-year sales, it said on Wednesday.
* Helped by steady growth in all of Volvo Cars' key regions -- the United States, China and Europe, sales increased to 317,639 in the January to June period, up from 277,641 reported for the same period last year
* U.S. sales grew 39.6 percent buoyed by demand for its bestselling models XC60 and XC90, while sales in China, Volvo Cars' largest market, jumped 18.4 percent thanks to strong demand locally produced XC60 and S90 models
* For Europe, Volvo Cars reported a 5.7 percent sales rise, citing demand for its new XC60, the 90 Series cars and the new XC40 small SUV
* Volvo Cars' executives recently warned that the U.S.-China trade dispute could undermine plans to create up to 4,000 more auto jobs in South Carolina, where it recently opened a new factory to localise U.S. production.
* An initial public offering of the Swedish carmaker could be a possibility, with sources having said that parent Geely had hired investment banks to explore a $16 billion to $30 billion listing this year Link to press release: bit.ly/2NpKStK (Reporting by Esha Vaish in Stockholm)