Detroit Bureau on Twitter

October U.S. Sales Predicted to Decline Again

However, they are "only" off single digits.

by on Oct.23, 2009

October new-vehicle retail sales are expected to decline 6% compared with one year ago–the first single-digit decline since May 2008, according to J.D. Power and Associates.

This decline marks the most significant improvement in 17 months, excluding August 2009 when year-over-year sales were up 13% due to the CARS program, according to the sometimes overly optimistic Power, which gathers real-time transaction data from more than 8,900 franchisees across the United States.

October new-vehicle retail sales are expected to come in at 651,600 units, which represent a seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) of 8.3 million units. With fleet volume down only 4% from one year ago, total sales for October are projected to come in at 816,600 units, down 6% from October 2008.

U.S. New Vehicle Sales and SAAR, October  2009

October 2009(1) September 2009 October 2008 Versus October  2008
New Vehicle Retail Sales 651,600 565,446 668,159 -6%
Total Vehicles 816,600 744,161 834,018 -6%
Retail SAAR 8.3 m 7.2 m 8.7 m
Total SAAR 10.3 m 9.2 m 10.5 m
J.D. Power and Associates

(1) Figures cited for October 2009 are forecasted numbers based on the first 15 selling days of the month.

(2) The percentage change is adjusted based on the number of selling days (28 days vs. 27 days one year ago).

It was the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008, and the subsequent chaos in the world’s financial markets that led to the Great Recession, which is ongoing.

“While year-over-year comparisons benefit from a low selling base in October 2008, improvements in consumer confidence and credit are propelling the return to positive sales gains relative to last year,” said Gary Dilts, senior vice president of global automotive operations at J.D. Power and Associates.

“October’s selling rate is expected to come in at 10.3 million units–nearly flat compared with 10.5 million units one year ago–which is an encouraging sign for the industry and in line with our expectations for the rest of the year.”

While most of the retail segment mix remains relatively unchanged from September, the share of pickup trucks increased to nearly 14 percent from less than 12 percent last month, driven mainly by strong marketing programs, incentives and stable fuel prices.

J.D. Power and Associates is maintaining its forecast for 2009 at 10.3 million units for total sales, with retail sales projected to come in at 8.6 million units. The 2010 forecast remains at 11.5 million units for total sales and 9.5 million units for retail sales.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.