Friday, September 25, 2015

Vehicle Sales Forecast for September: Over 17 Million Annual Rate Again

by Bill McBride on 9/25/2015 08:19:00 PM

The automakers will report September vehicle sales on Thursday, Oct 1. Sales in August were at 17.7 million on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis (SAAR), and it appears sales in September will be over 17 million SAAR again.

Note:  There were 25 selling days in September, up from 24 in September 2014 (Also note: Labor Day was included in September this year).  Here are several forecasts:

From WardsAuto: Forecast: U.S. Automakers to Record Best September in Ten Years

A WardsAuto forecast calls for U.S. automakers to deliver 1.42 million light vehicles in September, an 11-year high for the month. The report puts the seasonally adjusted annual rate of sales for the month at 17.8 million units, slightly above last month’s 17.7 million SAAR and well ahead of the year-to-date SAAR through August (17.1 million).
From J.D. Power: Labor Day Propels New-Vehicle Retail Sales’ Strongest Growth So Far in 2015
Benefitting from an anomaly on the calendar, new-vehicle sales are headed to double-digit growth in September, with retail sales on pace for the strongest selling rate of any month in more than a decade, according to a monthly sales forecast developed jointly by J.D. Power and LMC Automotive.

For the first time since 2012, Labor Day weekend falls in the industry’s September sales month instead of August. Labor Day weekend is traditionally the biggest new-vehicle sales weekend of the year, as consumers take advantage of the holiday and model year-end sales promotions, as well as the availability of the new model-year vehicles arriving in showrooms. [17.7 million SAAR]
emphasis added
From Kelley Blue Book: Double-Digit New-Car Sales Growth Expected In September 2015, According To Kelley Blue Book
New-vehicle sales are expected to increase 12 percent year-over-year to a total of 1.39 million units in September 2015, resulting in an estimated 17.5 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), according to Kelley Blue Book ...

"While the Volkswagen scandal will have a negative impact on sales, the affected models represent less than a quarter of their portfolio, and some dealers have already depleted their stock of those units," said Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst for Kelley Blue Book. "The larger issue is the hit the automaker's brand image and perceived trustworthiness, which may affect sales of their other models. We think the effects on September sales won't be too bad for Volkswagen Group's combined sales, but October and beyond could be another story."
Another solid month for auto sales, however Volkswagen sales might have fallen off a cliff at the end of the month.